Practical Winery
65 Mitchell Blvd, San Rafael, CA 94903
phone: 415-453-9700 ext 102
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Winter 2011
Carbon dioxide (a natural byproduct of fermentation), is sequestered from a port in each fermentor. An innovative process will remove the carbon dioxide (CO2) from the winery, reducing the building’s energy requirements for air quality and temperature control. Plans call for eventually converting CO2 to calcium carbonate for reuse in winemaking, preventing contribution to global warming. “The goal is for the facility to be not just carbon neutral, but carbon zero, in terms of its carbon emissions,” adds Boulton.
David Block (biochemical engineer and Department of Viticulture & Enology vice chair), notes, “The new fermentation system and adjacent controlled-temperature rooms will enable scientists and students to conduct high-precision winemaking studies and probe how different variables such as grape growing practices, vineyard location, and choice of yeast strains impact the character and quality of wines. No other viticulture and enology research organization has a facility with these capabilities.”
Donors make vision a reality
Private donors contributed funds beginning with $5 million in 2001 from the late winemaker Robert Mondavi. Other major donors include Ronald and Diane Miller and a group of winery partners led by Jess Jackson and his wife Barbara Banke (Kendall-Jackson Wines), and Jerry Lohr (J. Lohr Vineyards & Wines) to secure funds needed to design and construct the facility.
More than 150 alumni, corporations, foundations, and individuals contributed funds to make the winery, brewery, and food- processing complex a reality; including major contributors from the Department of Viticulture & Enology’s Board of Visitors and Fellows.
KLR Machines donated nine pieces of equipment in 2008–2010 in a threeyear agreement, continuing a relationship between UC Davis and KLR Machines that began in 1984 with donation of a Bucher model RPL 36 tank press. In 2010, donated Bucher Vaslin equipment included a TRV 35 vibrating sorting table (3.5 meters long) and two sets of Delta crusherrollers (F20 for crushing after sorting on the TRV 35, F2 for crushing under the Delta E2 destemmer).
In 2009, KLR donations included a Bucher Xplus 22HL tank press (with 12 modifiable programs), a Delta PM 2- positive displacement helicoidal must pump (variable speed and level sensor), and a Delta TRV 20 – vibrating receiving hopper. A Costral Bottling semi-automatic 14-spout rotary filler and corker/screw-capper was donated that year.
Students sort/remove undesirable grapes on vibrating conveyor at UC Davis receiving pad, prior to destemming and filling a 200-L fermentor in position under the destemmer.
In 2008, KLR donations included a Delta E2 Destemmer with variable speed drive for hand or machinepicked grapes and special high-density polyethylene cage of varying hole sizes, a 22HL Bucher XPF tank press, and Delta TR 300 incline conveyor (VFD height of three meters).
The laboratory includes a $100,000 donation of Thermo-Fisher lab equipment to support all basic analyses necessary for winemaking. (TA, pH, VA, RS, SO2, etc.). Filtrox donated a 40cm x 40cm plate+frame filter with crossover plate and Meissner donated a 30-inch T-line cartridge filter.
Cooperages 1912 barrel room – For the winery’s first vintage, UC Davis and Cooperages 1912 created a versatile real-world scenario for different wine varieties and winemaking styles.
“It is important for UC Davis to create a foundation from which we can build custom T.W. Boswell and World Cooperage barrel programs,” says Chik Brenneman. “For this
reason, we are starting with traditional toasting styles and an even split of French and American oak.”
Cooperages 1912 donated 20, 225- liter barrels for the 2010 vintage. To simulate a working winery situation, UC Davis supplemented these with 5-year-old barrels formerly used to age Chardonnay. Each year, UC Davis will partner with Cooperages 1912’s research team to develop custom barrel profiles and conduct joint research. “This barrel program reflects a typical winery scenario, with wine being placed in a variety of wood types, toasts, and barrel ages to later create a balanced blend,” says David Llodrá, Cooperages 1912 research director.
Invite for donations
The Department of Viticulture & Enology needs $6 million to $7 million in private donations for an auxiliary building to include equipment to filter rainwater for reuse.
More information about the department and the new winery is available online at