Wine 101: Wine Basics

Wine 101: Wine Basics

Most people enjoy a nice glass of wine with dinner, and some discuss the complexities of taste, but we're returning to basics. What is wine? How is it made? Let's start from the beginning and build a base of understanding to explore all things wine. Join us for a new series at the intersection of science and business in Wine, Behind the Curtain featuring Andrew Waterhouse ‘77, the Director of the Robert Mondavi Institute for Wine & Food Science at UC-Davis. The first episode–Wine 101: Wine Basics–is a conversation between Dr. Waterhouse and Notre Dame Professor Dr. Holly Goodson, a biochemist who teaches the science of fermentation and is an advisor to a commercial vineyard. We'll share how to experience your favorite bottle and what decisions or locations affect its flavor and aroma.

Meet the Faculty: Holly Goodson

May 8, 2018; Professor Holly Goodson. (Photo by Barbara Johnston/University of Notre Dame)

Holly Goodson is a biochemist in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at the University of Notre Dame. She is also a consulting biochemist for Ironhand Vineyard, a small boutique winery in the St. Joseph River Valley. She earned her undergraduate degree in molecular biology from Princeton University and her doctoral degree in biochemistry from Stanford University. She joined the Notre Dame faculty in 2000. Her lab is focused on addressing questions related to cell biology using a combination of biochemistry, molecular biology, quantitative microscopy, and computational models. She teaches the wine portion of the science of fermentation.

Meet the Faculty: Andrew Waterhouse '77

Andrew L. Waterhouse ’77 is a third generation Californian, but moved frequently while growing up, including some years abroad.  He attended the University of Notre Dame where he earned a Bachelor of Science in Chemistry, and then UC Berkeley for his PhD in organic chemistry. In 1991, he moved to the Department of Viticulture and Enology at UC Davis where his research program delved into wine oxidation as well as various aspects of wine chemistry, with an emphasis on phenolic compounds.  His graduate students and post-docs are winemakers, researchers and faculty across California and elsewhere around the globe. He is currently a Co-Editor in Chief of the Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture and is Director of the Robert Mondavi Institute for Wine and Food Science at UC Davis.

Sips & Bites: Orange vs. Red, Tasting Experimental Wines

Presented by Robert Mondavi Institute

In Spring 2022, The Robert Mondavi Institute at UC Davis offered viewers rare opportunity to taste experimental wines with industry experts. As a graduate researcher at UC Davis, Dr. James Campbell produced two wines that illustrate naturally occurring pigments’ effect on tannins. He joined Dr. Andrew Waterhouse ’77, director of the Robert Mondavi Institute Co-Editor in Chief of the Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture, and Madeline Puckette, the co-founder of Wine Folly, to discuss the research project, followed by a guided tasting.

An Introduction to Wine 101

Presented by Andrew Waterhouse '77

Run time: 1.5 Minutes

How to Taste Wine

Presented by Notre Dame Family Wines

Notre Dame Family Wines Tasting Placemat

Presented by Notre Dame Family Wines

Ask a Sommelier

What are they keys to tasting wine, and what are the 5 Ss? Join Greg Tucker from Notre Dame Family Wines as he breaks down the best approaches to enjoying the perfect glass.

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Presented by

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Featured Speakers: 

  • Holly Goodson, Biochemist in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at the University of Notre Dame, Consulting Biochemist for Ironhand Vineyard in the St. Joseph River Valley
  • Andrew Waterhouse ‘77, Director of the Robert Mondavi Institute for Wine & Food Science at UC-Davis

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Additional Resources

Wine Folly

Wine Folly is a content site devoted to wine knowledge and appreciation. Their mission is to allow people to gain a deeper understanding of wine through learning.

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