"In the heart of the Napa Valley, a vineyard produces fine Cabernet Sauvignon with virtually no help from laborers."
"The 40-acre “touchless vineyard” was established by Kaan Kurtural, a University of California Cooperative Extension specialist who has devoted much of his career to improving production efficiency in vineyards as labor shortages have worsened." So begins an article by Tim Hearden on capitalpress.com, "the West's Ag Website".
I want to take this opportunity to thank the organizers (Kay and Anita) of "Wine Flavor 101: Managing Wine Quality – Problematic Fermentation", the program held on February 15 to celebrate my career. I also want to thank all the speakers for their kind words, particularly David Block and Charlie Edwards, on the impact I have had on their careers and the industry. It's very humbling to know that these things can mean so much to others.
The UC Davis Viticulture and Enology extension committee had a busy start to the year, with a booth and reception at the Unified Symposium in January and two “On the Road” educational events: one in Santa Cruz in February and another in Temecula during the first week of March.
The wine chemistry research in Dr. Andrew Waterhouse’s lab takes a number of diverse approaches, depending on the issue at hand and the industry’s priorities. Wine oxidation is a big issue today and several students are tackling this from a number of angles. PhD students Lingjun Ma and Anita Peterson investigated the basic chemical reactions that oxidation stimulates in order to understand what approaches might be worth pursuing. These have led to the idea that glutathione might be a good preservative for wine, as well as showing how acetaldehyde has many forms present in wine.
Department Chair Dr. David Block returned in January from a three-month sabbatical trip to Europe and South Africa. Along the way, he had the opportunity to connect with wonderful hosts! Some were old friends, some were alumni, and some were new friends that he made along his trip through Portugal, Spain, Italy, France, Germany, and South Africa.
Dr. Block says, "Thanks to all. It was great to make new connections to wineries and research centers around the globe and to strengthen our connections."