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Cornell Invites Wine Enthusiasts to Attend CUVEE


By Alan Lakso

Cornell University Viticulture and Enology Experience (CUVEE) participants practice experimental wine blending to create their own wines.

The Cornell University Viticulture and Enology Experience (CUVEE) pairs respected Cornell enologist Kathy Arnink and viticulturist Alan Lakso with leading Finger Lakes wine professionals for an intensive week-long program exploring the science of grape growing and wine making. Held July 17-22, 2011, this course will help participants develop hands-on knowledge of grape growing and winemaking and the science and art in the glass.

The course will be held on the Cornell University campus in the beautiful Finger Lakes wine region. The participants will learn from faculty and leading vineyard managers about the scientific principles and practical methods of growing quality wine grapes around the world, understand the complex interactions of climate, soil and culture (i.e., terroir), and receive hands-on experience with vine management.

In the winery and lab, participants will learn the principles and processes of wine making, wine analysis, and sensory perception, as well as develop their own custom wine blends. They will also enjoy special wine tastings and explore wine-food interactions.

To consider the business aspects of investing in a vineyard or winery, the class will also visit wineries, speak to their owners to obtain an insider's view of the wine business, and dine with leading growers, winemakers, and faculty.

CUVEE Canopy
CUVEE attendees practice hands-on canopy management in local vineyards

CUVEE welcomes people with a passion for grapes and wine: wine enthusiasts; individuals interested in growing grapes to produce wine for pleasure or for commercial purposes; anyone contemplating purchasing, investing in, or opening a winery; wine professionals such as merchants, restaurateurs, chefs and sommeliers; as well as those with a keen interest in understanding the "nuts and bolts" of growing grapes and making wine.

"This program changed what was a general interest in the subject to a complete fascination," commented past participant Sheila Sarin. "It has made me want to seriously pursue viticulture and/or enology in the future, be it in research or in the field."

Alan Lakso is professor in the department of horticulture.