Home Industry News Releases Lodi Winegrape Commission Partners with SommFoundation for Masterclass and Scholarship Competition

Lodi Winegrape Commission Partners with SommFoundation for Masterclass and Scholarship Competition


Virtual Lodi Masterclass held on September 28 and 30 will be led by Elaine Chukan Brown

Lodi, CA, September 1, 2020 – The Lodi Winegrape Commission is pleased to announce its 2020 partnership with SommFoundation, one of the industry’s most progressive nonprofit organizations dedicated to the enrichment of wine and spirits professionals through travel, scholarships, and education. In partnership, the Lodi Winegrape Commission will provide a virtual masterclass on the historical winegrowing region of Lodi, California. Participants of the virtual masterclass will have the opportunity to earn scholarships toward furthering wine education and certifications through an online timed test. 

Led by award-winning author and speaker, Elaine Chukan Brown, the virtual masterclass will take place on September 28 and 30, from 10:00 AM to 12:00 PM PDT each day. Focusing on innovation and diversity, the masterclass will dive deep into Lodi’s terroir, viticulture and winemaking practices, and cultural history of its people. Throughout the masterclass, Brown will be joined by various Lodi growers and winemakers who will provide firsthand accounts of their experience in the vineyards and cellars. Among others, guest speakers will include winegrowers Markus Bokisch (Bokisch Ranches Inc. and Bokisch Vineyards), Susan Tipton (Acquiesce Winery), and Jeff Perlegos (Stampede Vineyard, Clements Hills AVA). Each of the two days of the masterclasses will be unique in terms of theme, speakers, and wines.

“We’re thrilled to continue our partnership with a like-minded organization,” says Stuart Spencer, Executive Director for the Lodi Winegrape Commission. “Fostering education has always been one of our top priorities. At a time when we are not able to host in-person visits to our region or outside markets, we feel fortunate for the means of connection which SommFoundation provides. We are equally excited to be working with Elaine Chukan Brown once again. Over the years, Elaine has spent a great deal of time in Lodi and has gotten to know the region and its people very well. We are confident that she will deliver an engaging and informative webinar.”

Registration is open to all wine industry trade members. Following the completion of both masterclasses, registered attendees will be granted a one-time access to an online 20-minute timed test through Thursday, October 1, at 11:59 PM PDT. The test will cover information from the masterclasses including, but not limited to, Lodi’s wines, history, and terroir. The test will be scored by the most correct answers given in the shortest amount of time. The top three scorers will receive the following scholarships, to be applied toward wine education as well as access to SommFoundation’s Global Diagram of Wine: 

First place: $1,500 plus guaranteed attendance to the 2021 SommFoundation Harvest Enrichment Trip to Lodi, CA

Second place: $1,000 

Third place: $500

Winners will be announced live by representatives of both SommFoundation and the Lodi Winegrape Commission on the SommFoundation Instagram (@SommFoundation) on Friday, October 2, at 3:00 PM PDT. 

To register for the Lodi Wine masterclass click here.

About the Lodi American Viticultural Area (AVA)

A historic winegrowing region since the 1850s, Lodi is perfectly situated 40 miles south of Sacramento and 90 miles east of San Francisco. Lodi’s Mediterranean climate and distinct soils allow its growers to cultivate 125 winegrape varieties, making Lodi the most diverse winegrowing region in the United States. The region also serves as home to 85 boutique wineries specializing in small-lot, handmade wines that have garnered major awards at domestic and international wine competitions. 

Lodi is naturally a leader in sustainable viticulture. Created by California farmers and accredited by world-renowned scientists, LODI RULES is America’s original sustainable winegrowing program. Held to a high standard of scientific rigor and excellence, the program emphasizes environmentally and socially responsible practices, while keeping economic feasibility in mind for long-term business success. Today, there are more than 51,000 acres certified throughout California and Israel. For more information about the Lodi AVA or LODI RULES, visit lodiwine.com and lodirules.org.

About SommFoundation

SommFoundation (The Guild of Sommeliers Education Foundation) is a California 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation, committed to assisting aspiring beverage professionals to achieve their full potential. To learn more, visit sommfoundation.com

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