MU Show Me Grape and Wine event set for March 7-9

By Linda Geist

University of Missouri Extension

The third annual Show Me Grape and Wine Conference and Symposium takes place March 7 to 9 at the Hampton Inn & Suites in Columbia.

University of Missouri Extension viticulturist Dean Volenberg says the event offers viticulturists and enologists the opportunity to learn from leading experts and each other. Volenberg is program director of the MU Grape and Wine Institute.

The March 7 session focuses on viticulture. Cornell University associate professor Marc Fuchs leads a discussion on grapevine red blotch disease, a growing threat to vineyards. Fuchs, who received his doctorate from Université Louis Pasteur in France, has researched viruses of fruit crops and vegetables for more than 30 years. He will tell growers what they can do to mitigate the threat of grapevine red botch disease.

James E. Schoelz, virologist with the MU Division of Plant Sciences, provides the results of a statewide survey of viruses in Missouri vineyards. Schoelz researches the environmental and genetic factors that influence the pathogenicity and host range of plant viruses. Other topics include managing vegetative vigor, nutrient management, sour rot, and grapevines’ response to 2,4-D and dicamba.

Some of the country’s leading enologists top the March 8 session. James Harbertson, associate professor of enology at Washington State University, talks about the impact of grape ripening on wine phenolics and sensory attributes. His research focuses on the phenolic compounds found in grapes and wine and their biochemical and chemical changes during grape ripening, winemaking and aging.

Colorado State University enologist Stephen Menke leads a discussion on identifying and understanding the origins of wine faults. He researches elucidation of wine aromatic compounds, particularly aroma profiles that are uniquely associate with identification of grape varieties, terroir specificities, horticultural practices, winemaking practices and consumer recognition of wine styles.

Ethan Joseph, winemaker from Shelburne Vineyard in Vermont, presents a relatively new cultivar for tasting. The new cultivar, Marquette, is popular in cooler regions of the United States. Joseph developed a sub-brand for the winery called Iapetus, which represents wines with a strong sense of place.

Volenberg invites attendees to bring three bottles of wine for the blind tasting technical session.

On March 9, the Show Me Grape and Wine Symposium highlights viticulture and enology research taking place in Missouri. Fifteen-minute presentations focus on identifying, solving and managing problems in continental climate viticulture and enology.

Register online at

The Grape and Wine Institute is part of MU’s College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources.