Home » Current Catalog » Courses » Viticulture and Enology(VEN) Courses

View Print/PDF

Viticulture and Enology (VEN Courses)

VEN 101 Introduction to Winemaking/Enology

3.0 units.
Acceptable for credit: Transfer to UC, CSU
Course Offered: Fall, Spring
Grading Method: Letter Grade or Pass/No Pass
An examination of the principles of enology (winemaking) including history, grape growing, chemistry, wine microorganisms, fermentation, winemaking operations, cooperage, physiology and sociology of wine, and health and legal issues. This course is not open to students who have received credit for AG 101.

VEN 102 Introduction to Viticulture

3.0 units.
Acceptable for credit: Transfer to UC, CSU
Course Offered: Fall, Spring
Grading Method: Letter Grade or Pass/No Pass
An introduction to viticulture including grape growing, biology, anatomy, history, distribution, propagation, varieties, wine types, climate, common diseases and pests. This course is not open to students who have received credit for AG 102.

VEN 103 Sensory Evaluation of Wine

3.0 units.
Limitations on Enrollment: Must be 21 years of age or older.
Acceptable for credit: Transfer CSU
Course Offered: Fall
Grading Method: Letter Grade or Pass/No Pass
An exploration of the principles of sensory wine evaluation. Demonstrates how wine quality is affected by climate, viticulture practices, production techniques, grape varieties, vineyard location, oak aging, and storage conditions. Participants will survey and evaluate commercial wine styles. Limitation on enrollment: students must be 21 years of age or older. This course is not open to students who have received credit for AG 103.

VEN 104 Advanced Sensory Evaluation of Wine

3.0 units.
Limitations on Enrollment: Must be 21 years of age or older
Prerequisite: VEN 103 - Sensory Evaluation of Wine ; or VEN 103 - Sensory Evaluation of Wine
Acceptable for credit: Transfer CSU
Course Offered: Spring
Grading Method: Letter Grade or Pass/No Pass
An investigation of Bordeaux, Burgundian, and Rhone varietals from regions where they occur world wide -- France, USA, Chile, Italy, Australia, New Zealand, and Germany. Focuses on geography/soils, enological considerations, viticulture practices, wine production techniques and styles produced. This course is not open to students who have received credit for AG 104.

VEN 105 Wine Marketing and Sales

3.0 units.
Acceptable for credit: Transfer CSU
Grading Method: Letter Grade or Pass/No Pass
An introductory overview of the wine industry, production, planning, marketing channels, advertising, promotion, packaging, pricing, retail/wholesale distribution, and public relations. This course is not open to students who have received credit for AG 105.

VEN 106 Winery and Vineyard Financial Management

3.0 units.
Advisories: ACCT 130 - Financial Accounting ; CBIS 371 - Intro to Excel
Acceptable for credit: Transfer CSU
Course Offered: Fall, Spring
Grading Method: Letter Grade or Pass/No Pass
Presents the many aspects of operating a small to medium-sized winery in today's business environment. Topics include an overview of the California grape and wine industry, government compliance, financial planning (capital and operating budgets), grape supply options, grape contracts, financial and managerial accounting for vineyards and wineries. Includes the basics of vineyard and winery financial management e.g. using financial statements and what they mean, cash flow management, financial and investment analysis, banking and funding sources. The class combines short lecture and hands-on experience to gain practice with, and examine the limitations of, each analysis. Some basic understanding of Microsoft Excel is recommended. This course is not open to students who have received credit for AG 106.

VEN 114 Wine Business

3.0 units.
Advisories: BUS 101 - Introduction to Business ; ENGL 514 - Writing Skills 4
Acceptable for credit: Transfer CSU
Course Offered: Fall, Spring
Grading Method: Letter Grade or Pass/No Pass
The course will cover the basics of wine business for commercial wine production, sales, marketing, logistics, compliance and administration. The class combines short lecture and hands-on experience to gain practice with, and examine the limitations of, each analysis. The student will work in small groups analyzing regional wine industries. This course is not open to students who have received credit for AG 114.

VEN 120 Viticulture Operations 1

3.0 units.
Advisories: VEN 102 - Introduction to Viticulture ; or VEN 102 - Introduction to Viticulture
Acceptable for credit: Transfer CSU
Course Offered: Fall
Grading Method: Letter Grade or Pass/No Pass
Vineyard practices for the fall and winter seasons, including harvest, pruning, fertilization, weed control, erosion control, and propagation. Laboratory work will stress practical applications of viticulture theory. Operations in commercial vineyards will be studied through field trips. This course is not open to students who have received credit for AG 120.

VEN 121 Viticulture Operations 2

3.0 units.
Advisories: VEN 102 - Introduction to Viticulture ; or VEN 102 - Introduction to Viticulture
Acceptable for credit: Transfer CSU
Course Offered: Spring
Grading Method: Letter Grade or Pass/No Pass
Vineyard practices for the spring season including cultivation, frost control, planting, training, irrigation, disease, and pest control. Laboratory work will stress practical applications of viticulture theory. Operations in commercial vineyards will be studied through field trips. This course is not open to students who have received credit for AG 121.

VEN 122 Viticulture Operations 3

1.0 unit.
Acceptable for credit: Transfer CSU
Course Offered: Summer
Grading Method: Letter Grade or Pass/No Pass
Vineyard practices for the summer season including canopy management, crop load assessment and adjustment, pest and disease monitoring and management, weed control, irrigation, and grape quality improvement techniques. This course is not open to students who have received credit for AG 122.

VEN 125 Soils and Plant Nutrition

4.0 units.
Advisories: CHEM 120 - Introductory Chemistry
Acceptable for credit: Transfer to UC, CSU
Course Offered: Fall, Spring
Grading Method: Letter Grade or Pass/No Pass
A study of the physical, chemical and biological properties of soils, including plant nutrition and factors affecting the availability of nutrients. Composition, value, use and application of fertilizer materials and soil amendments will be covered. The course is not open to students who are enrolled in or have received credit for AG 125.

VEN 130 Integrated Pest Management

4.0 units.
Prerequisite: VEN 102 - Introduction to Viticulture (or completion of AG 102); or AG 161 - Introduction to Plant Science
Acceptable for credit: Transfer CSU
Grading Method: Letter Grade or Pass/No Pass
A study of the various pests and diseases found in California vineyard, fruit, vegetable, nut and grain crops - emphasizing pest and disease identification, sampling and monitoring techniques, and control methods. Integrated pest management approaches will be emphasized, including the latest bio-control strategies, biotechnological advances, and disease modeling for risk management. Students will visit local vineyards and farms providing "hands-on" learning opportunities. Two separate lab sections will be offered in order to provide students the appropriate option for their agricultural field of interest.  Section I will be for the Viticulture focus, Section II will be for the Agriculture focus. This course is not open to students who are enrolled in or have received credit for AG 130.

VEN 135 Grapevine Physiology

1.0 unit.
Advisories: VEN 102 - Introduction to Viticulture ; or VEN 102 - Introduction to Viticulture
Acceptable for credit: Transfer CSU
Grading Method: Letter Grade or Pass/No Pass
An advanced study of grapevine physiology and phenology. Topics include vine balance, flowering and fruit set, stages of berry growth and vine water status. This course is designed for those working in the wine grape industry and already familiar with vineyard operations. This course is not open to students who have received credit for AG 135.

VEN 140 Viticulture Operations 4

3.0 units.
Prerequisite: VEN 120 - Viticulture Operations 1 ; or VEN 120 - Viticulture Operations 1
Acceptable for credit: Transfer CSU
Course Offered: Fall
Grading Method: Letter Grade or Pass/No Pass
Advanced vineyard practices for the fall season including crop projection, grape quality assessment, grape maturity monitoring, harvest coordination, post-harvest practices, and budgeting. Management planning and financial aspects of the operations are emphasized. This course is not open to students who have received credit for AG 140.

VEN 141 Viticulture Operations 5

3.0 units.
Prerequisite: VEN 121 - Viticulture Operations 2 ; or VEN 121 - Viticulture Operations 2
Acceptable for credit: Transfer CSU
Course Offered: Spring
Grading Method: Letter Grade or Pass/No Pass
Advanced vineyard practices for the winter and spring seasons including vine balance determination, pruning, cover crop management, frost protection, vine training, vineyard research trials, and budgeting. Management planning and financial aspects of the operations are emphasized. This course is not open to students who have received credit for AG 141.

VEN 142 Viticulture Operations 6

1.0 unit.
Prerequisite: VEN 122 - Viticulture Operations 3 ; or VEN 122 - Viticulture Operations 3
Acceptable for credit: Transfer CSU
Course Offered: Summer
Grading Method: Letter Grade or Pass/No Pass
Advanced vineyard practices for the summer season including equipment operation and maintenance, vine training, vineyard research trials, and budgeting. Management planning and financial aspects of the operations are emphasized. This course is not open to students who have received credit for AG 142.

VEN 151 Winery Equipment

2.0 units.
Prerequisite: Completion of or concurrent enrollment in; VEN 101 - Introduction to Winemaking/Enology ; or VEN 101 - Introduction to Winemaking/Enology
Acceptable for credit: Transfer CSU
Course Offered: Fall
Grading Method: Letter Grade or Pass/No Pass
Presents all aspects of winery equipment; function, use, location, safe operation and repair. A strong emphasis is placed on safety and legal compliance. Production, storage and packaging equipment are included. This course is not open to students who have received credit for AG 151.

VEN 301 Pairing Wine and Food

0.5 units.
Limitations on Enrollment: Must be 21 years of age or older.
Acceptable for credit: D - Credit - Degree Applicable
Grading Method: Letter Grade or Pass/No Pass
Designed to familiarize students with the components of tasting wine and food, to develop wine evaluation techniques, and to pair wines with appropriate food. This course is not open to students who have received credit for AG 301.

VEN 302 Progressive Wine and Food Pairing

0.5 units.
Limitations on Enrollment: Must be 21 years of age or older.
Acceptable for credit: D - Credit - Degree Applicable
Grading Method: Letter Grade or Pass/No Pass
Designed to give students an understanding of how to ensure food flavors and intensity are maximized, while serving a wider range of wines. This course is not open to students who have received credit for AG 302.

VEN 303 European Wine and Food

0.5 units.
Limitations on Enrollment: Must be 21 years or older
Acceptable for credit: D - Credit - Degree Applicable
Course Offered: Fall, Spring
Grading Method: Letter Grade or Pass/No Pass
Designed for students wishing to expand their knowledge of wine and food pairings. Focuses on European as well as California wines with appropriate regional food. This course is not open to students who have received credit for AG 303.

VEN 304 Dessert Wine and Food Pairing

0.5 units.
Limitations on Enrollment: Must be 21 years of age or older.
Acceptable for credit: D - Credit - Degree Applicable
Grading Method: Letter Grade or Pass/No Pass
Designed for advanced students wishing to expand their knowledge in wine and dessert pairings. Champagnes, sparkling wines and a variety of dessert wines (ports, sherries, Madeira) will be presented. This course is not open to students who have received credit for AG 304.

VEN 305 Pairing the Wines and Foods of Provence

0.5 units.
Advisories: VEN 301 - Pairing Wine and Food
Limitations on Enrollment: Must be 21 years of age or older.
Acceptable for credit: D - Credit - Degree Applicable
Grading Method: Letter Grade or Pass/No Pass
Designed for advanced students wishing to expand their knowledge of wine and food pairings. Focuses on the distinctive foods and wines of the Provence region in southern France. This course is not open to students who have received credit for AG 305.

VEN 306 Pairing the Wines and Foods of Tuscany

0.5 units.
Advisories: VEN 301 - Pairing Wine and Food ; or VEN 301 - Pairing Wine and Food

Limitations on Enrollment: Must be 21 years or older at time of registration.
Acceptable for credit: D - Credit - Degree Applicable
Grading Method: Letter Grade or Pass/No Pass
Designed for advanced students wishing to expand their knowledge of specific wine and food pairings. Focuses on the distinctive foods and wines of the Tuscan region in northern Italy. This course is not open to students who have received credit for AG 306.

VEN 307 Vineyard Irrigation

3.0 units.
Acceptable for credit: D - Credit - Degree Applicable
Grading Method: Letter Grade or Pass/No Pass
Students will receive a general background in vineyard irrigation water management, including theory and practice lectures. Vineyard water stress monitoring, ETo, crop coefficients and drip irrigation topics will be covered. This course is not open to students who have received credit for AG 307.

VEN 308 Wine Analysis

3.0 units.
Acceptable for credit: D - Credit - Degree Applicable
Grading Method: Letter Grade or Pass/No Pass
Students will receive a general background in wine analysis with theory and demonstrations. Most common and important wine analysis in current winemaking industry settings will be practiced in teams providing hands on experience. This course is not open to students who have received credit for AG 308.

VEN 310 Winemaking Operations I

2.0 units.
Advisories: VEN 101 - Introduction to Winemaking/Enology ; or VEN 101 - Introduction to Winemaking/Enology

Limitations on Enrollment: Must be 18 years of age or older and registered in the Enology/Viticulture major or must be 21 years old if not enrolled in the major.
Acceptable for credit: D - Credit - Degree Applicable
Grading Method: Letter Grade or Pass/No Pass
The first course in a four-semester sequence, students are introduced to winemaking from grape harvest through bottling. This course is not open to students who have received credit for AG 310.

VEN 311 Winemaking Operations II

2.0 units.
Advisories: VEN 310 - Winemaking Operations I ; and VEN 101 - Introduction to Winemaking/Enology ; or VEN 310 - Winemaking Operations I ; and VEN 101 - Introduction to Winemaking/Enology

Limitations on Enrollment: Must be 18 years of age or older and registered in the Enology/Viticulture major or must be at least 21 years old.
Acceptable for credit: D - Credit - Degree Applicable
Course Offered: Spring
Grading Method: Letter Grade or Pass/No Pass
The second course in a four-semester sequence, students will chemically analyze, fine, and bottle the red and white wines that were fermented in the previous semester. This course is not open to students who have received credit for AG 311.

VEN 312 Advanced Viticulture

3.0 units.
Prerequisite: VEN 102 - Introduction to Viticulture ; or VEN 102 - Introduction to Viticulture
Acceptable for credit: D - Credit - Degree Applicable
Grading Method: Letter Grade or Pass/No Pass
This class prepares students to understand and make decisions for the viticultural process including canopy management, frost protection, specific deficit irrigation, morphology and physiology of the grapevine. This course is not open to students who have received credit for AG 312.

VEN 314 Organic/Biodynamic Winegrowing

3.0 units.
Acceptable for credit: D - Credit - Degree Applicable
Course Offered: Spring
Grading Method: Letter Grade or Pass/No Pass
Introduction to professional organic and biodynamic wine grape production with ecological production methods. Theory and practice with an emphasis on regional growing conditions. Includes appropriate planting, maintenance, soil fertility, biodiversity, and ecological pest management, current winery practices, and cost analysis. This course is not open to students who have received credit for AG 314.

VEN 315 Fertilizers and Plant Nutrition

4.0 units.
Acceptable for credit: D - Credit - Degree Applicable
Course Offered: Spring
Grading Method: Letter Grade or Pass/No Pass
This course will provide an introduction to fertilizers and plant nutrition. Essential nutrients for plant development will be studied as well as deficiency symptoms and methods of correcting for these deficiencies. Fertilizer and other soil amendments will be studied as well as the proper management and application methods for these products. The course is not open to students who are enrolled in or have received credit for AG 315.

VEN 316 Introduction to Wine Microbiology

3.0 units.
Prerequisite: VEN 101 - Introduction to Winemaking/Enology ; or VEN 101 - Introduction to Winemaking/Enology
Acceptable for credit: D - Credit - Degree Applicable
Grading Method: Letter Grade or Pass/No Pass
Introduction to the natural development, physiology, biochemistry and control of yeasts and bacteria involved in the making, aging and spoilage of wine, including conditions that affect microbial growth and ecology during vinification, characteristics of various wine microorganisms, and identification and prevention of spoilage. This course is not open to students who have received credit for AG 316.

VEN 318 Advanced Winemaking

3.0 units.
Limitations on Enrollment: Must be 21 years old or older.
Prerequisite: VEN 101 - Introduction to Winemaking/Enology ; or VEN 101 - Introduction to Winemaking/Enology
Acceptable for credit: D - Credit - Degree Applicable
Grading Method: Letter Grade or Pass/No Pass
Students will receive an advanced background in winemaking, in a lecture setting. Relevant winemaking issues are analyzed and discussed. The course will cover the principles of viticulture for winemaking, wine chemistry, principles and practices of making standard types of wines, with special reference to methods of vinification and stability. A brief discussion of winemaking costs and alternatives is presented. This course is not open to students who have received credit for AG 318.

VEN 320 Wine Tasting Room Sales

1.5 units.
Acceptable for credit: D - Credit - Degree Applicable
Grading Method: Letter Grade or Pass/No Pass
Presents all aspects of wine tasting room service and sales. Cellar clubs, selling techniques, wine vocabulary, and the laws and regulations of serving wine in California are covered. Legalities of shipping wine interstate and the various means of wine shipment are discussed. This course is not open to students who have received credit for AG 320.

VEN 321 Winemaking Operations III

2.0 units.
Limitations on Enrollment: Must be 21 years of age or older
Prerequisite: VEN 310 - Winemaking Operations I ; or VEN 310 - Winemaking Operations I
Acceptable for credit: D - Credit - Degree Applicable
Grading Method: Letter Grade or Pass/No Pass
The third course in a two year sequence, students are introduced to all practical winemaking from grape harvest through bottle aging, including specific winemaking procedures. This course is not open to students who have received credit for AG 321.

VEN 322 Winemaking Operations IV

2.0 units.
Limitations on Enrollment: Must be 21 years of age or older
Prerequisite: VEN 311 - Winemaking Operations II ; or VEN 311 - Winemaking Operations II
Acceptable for credit: D - Credit - Degree Applicable
Grading Method: Letter Grade or Pass/No Pass
The fourth course in a two year sequence (four semesters), students are introduced to all practical process of winemaking from grape harvest through bottle aging, including specific winemaking procedures such as stability treatments, personnel management, and wine packaging and quality control. This course is not open to students who have received credit for AG 322.

VEN 323 Vineyard and Winery Evaluation

3.0 units.
Advisories: VEN 102 - Introduction to Viticulture ; and VEN 101 - Introduction to Winemaking/Enology
Acceptable for credit: D - Credit - Degree Applicable
Grading Method: Letter Grade or Pass/No Pass
This course will include the data collection and process analysis of vineyards and wineries in the San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara counties. The students and instructor will perform a comparative analysis of two local vineyard/winery operations, assessing a wide range of different variables ranging from soil conditions vineyard practices and winemaking to wine sales and product distribution. Students will present detailed reports at the end of the course with findings and suggestions to the management of the selected operations, addressing their specific concerns when applicable.

VEN 324 Small Acreage Grapegrowing

1.0 unit.
Acceptable for credit: D - Credit - Degree Applicable
Grading Method: Letter Grade or Pass/No Pass
Learn about small vineyard establishment and maintenance. Topics include: selection of site, variety and rootstock, vineyard layout, irrigation, trellising, planting and pest control. This course is not open to students who have received credit for AG 324.

VEN 330 Harvest Boot Camp

0.5 units.
Limitations on Enrollment: Must be 18 years of age or older
Acceptable for credit: D - Credit - Degree Applicable
Grading Method: Letter Grade or Pass/No Pass
Course provides a basic understanding of the vocabulary and procedures for harvesting both at the vineyard and at the winery. Efficiency and safety issues are addressed. Management principles encountered in the day-to-day harvest operation. This course is not open to students who have received credit for AG 330.

VEN 331 Practical Wine Appreciation

0.5 units.
Limitations on Enrollment: Students must be 21 years old at the time of registering for the class.
Acceptable for credit: D - Credit - Degree Applicable
Course Offered: Fall, Spring
Grading Method: Letter Grade or Pass/No Pass
Provides a basic understanding of wine varietal appreciation. Learn the descriptive language of wine and the basic components of wine appearance, aroma and flavor. Different wine varietals will be evaluated and discussed. The class consists of four separate two hour meetings for a total of eight hours.