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Plumpton launches scientific sensory courses to meet demand

Published:  12 November, 2021

Plumpton Wine Division is rolling out two scientific wine sensory training courses as part of its WineSkills Program in response to customer demand.

Earlier this year, the company revealed it would be investing further in the WineSkills Programme by diversifying the range of short courses offered.

WineSkills was first developed by Tony Milanowski, a lecturer in oenology and winemaking at Plumpton College for more than 12 years and is a training programme designed to support the UK wine production industry.

WineGB’s recent Training and Education survey ranked sensory evaluation within the top training needs among students, reflecting the increasing number of English and Welsh wines entering the market.

In response Plumpton will be running two one-day courses this December.

The first, Characterising Wine: Characterising flavour, balance, acidity and complexity, has been designed to focus on the theory of sensory analysis via wine characteristics, followed by a practical application through a tutored tasting. Plumpton College’s Dr Heber Rodrigues, who is a sensory scientist, will provide the sensory training, looking at acidity, balance and complexity in wine, while Sarah Midgely, who is a trained winemaker, will provide the winemaking insight.

Plumpton has also enlisted guest speaker, Simon Stockton, a judge for the Champagne & Sparkling World Wine Championships and Charles Heidsieck’s Champagne Brand Ambassador, to guide attendees through a tasting, explaining the process of what a judge looks for, based on these sensory characteristics.

The second course, Wine faults: identification, causes and corrections, is a one-day in-depth course looking at common wine faults, how they are identified, what their causes are and how they are corrected. Dr Rodrigues will lead the sensory training to this, followed by a wine-tasting guided by Tony Milanowski, Rathfinny Wine Estate winery manager.

Donna Frost, WineSkills program leader, said: “We have developed both these courses in response to demand from the industry. As the UK’s leading centre of wine education, it is important we are listening to the industry and continually developing our course offerings

“Sensory science is a major sector that is rapidly developing across the scientific field. We want to ensure we are offering topical workshops with a strong academic and practical focus that wine enthusiasts and students can learn from.”

The courses will take place at Bolney Wine Estate.