Faculty

Ben Montpetit New Viticulture and Enology Chair

Montpetit to Focus on New Educational Offerings, Diversity and Investment

Ben Montpetit, a yeast geneticist and biochemist, is the new chair of the Department of Viticulture and Enology at the University of California, Davis.

Montpetit joined UC Davis in 2016 and became department vice chair in 2021.

In his new role, he plans to enhance student offerings, continue to advance diversity efforts and foster investment in students, faculty, staff and department operations.

Contest: Design a label for the launch of Hilgard631's wine

The Department of Viticulture and Enology at UC Davis has almost completed the process of becoming licensed to sell wine and will do so under the entity Hilgard631. 

We invite all current undergraduate and graduate UC Davis students, as well as the Department of Viticulture and Enology faculty and staff, to take part in an exciting contest to help design the labels for these bottles. 
 

Contest Details, Rules and Deadlines

1. You may submit a design for one of the three options:

Research Profile, Luis Diaz-Garcia

Dr. Luis Diaz-Garcia is an Assistant Professor and Grape Breeder in the Department of Viticulture and Enology at UC Davis. He succeeded Dr. Andrew Walker, who led winegrape and rootstock breeding efforts at UC Davis for over 30 years. Dr. Diaz-Garcia earned his bachelor's degree in Agronomy from Universidad Autónoma Chapingo, Mexico. He then completed his master's degree in plant biotechnology at the National Laboratory of Genomics for Biodiversity (LANGEBIO) in Mexico, where he used systems biology and bioinformatics to study yeast stress. Subsequently, he obtained his Ph.D.

Recent Awards & Honors

DEPARTMENT NEWS 


The UC Davis Department of Viticulture and Enology Broadening Horizons Program was recently selected as one of the Gérard Basset Foundation 2023 grantees. The Gérard Basset Foundation supports global diversity, equity, and inclusion for wine, spirits, and hospitality professionals by funding education, learning, and career-enhancing programmes. 
 

Using Yeast to Convert Almond Hulls to Animal Feed

Yeast grown on almond hulls could be a new, sustainable route to produce high-protein animal feed from an agricultural waste product, according to research from UC Davis published Nov. 15 in PLOS One.

Raising animals for meat requires livestock feed that is high in protein, especially essential amino acids that animals need to grow. That makes feed the most expensive input in meat production.

Seminar Announcement, Sept. 22, 2023, Dr. Weibiao Zhou

Professor Weibiao Zhou, the Head of the Department of Food Science and Technology at the National University of Singapore, will be here on Friday, September 22nd. He will give a presentation on “Food Science Landscape and Career Opportunities in Singapore” at noon - 1:30 pm in the Sensory Theater.

We invite everyone in the RMI complex to join us.

Pizza and soft drinks will be offered. 

Congratulations to Andy Waterhouse on his retirement!

On May 31, 2023, the Department of Viticulture and Enology presented a seminar at the UC Davis Conference Center to honor the career of Professor Andrew Waterhouse. Several of his former students, postdocs, and visiting scholars were invited to speak at the event.  As you might imagine, many speakers talked about oxidation reactions, including some of the work they did in Andy’s lab, but some also spoke about their current work (some of Andy’s former students are actually working in areas related to what they studied in Dr. Waterhouse’s lab).