Grape Breeding and Enology

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Welcome to the Grape Breeding and Enology project website!

Located at the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities, we conduct research in the Department of Horticultural Science and at the Horticultural Research Center.  Our focus is on grapevine cultivar development which includes: wine grapes, table grape varieties, and ornamentals that survive and thrive the cold-climate conditions.  We also focus on understanding the mechanisms of disease and pest resistance so that we incorporate these traits as a way to improve sustainability for Minnesota growers.  In addition to developing grapes, we focus on developing and teaching enology best practices for cold-hardy grapes.

ISU/UMN Joint Research and Winemaking Webinar Series

Cellar Sanitation

Prior to the beginning of the grape harvest season, it is necessary to clean and sanitize the winery cellar to maintain wine quality, production consistency, and the long-term winery reputation. Cory Marx (UC Davis) and Luke Holcombe (Scott Laboratories) will present this topic during the first 1-hour webinar on August 4, 2020 at 3PM Central

Beta-glucans in wine cause filtration problems

Vintage 2019 MN grape wine filtering issue - UMN Grape Breeding & Enology Project

by Drew Horton, Enology Specialist

The University of Minnesota Grape Breeding & Enology Project has recently received anecdotal reports about difficulty in filtering vintage 2019 wines made from the Frontenac “family” of grapes: Frontenac, Frontenac gris and Frontenac blanc, and possibly some other grape varieties as well. Some winemakers have reported increased problems with filter and membrane clogging, especially with cross-flow type filters.


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