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Commercial Winemaking Principles and Practices

This Winemaking Certificate is an advanced online enology course that serves as a critical review of commercial winemaking principles and practices. The program provides a comprehensive package of technical knowledge for professional winemakers and wine industry employees wanting to enhance their knowledge, skills, business and careers, as well as serious noncommercial winemakers looking to take their pastime to the professional startup level.

The Winemaking Certificate includes six progressive modules covering ground from grape to glass. Program topics range from a critical review of winemaking techniques, styles and traditions to advice on aging, stabilization, filtration, bottling, and shelf life optimization. Portions of the curriculum focus specifically on winemaking in Indiana and the Midwestern and Eastern United States, but much of it is applicable to wineries anywhere in the world.

Module Descriptions

The purpose of this introductory module is to reiterate the fundamental ways and challenges of creating basic wine styles. It is intended to get all students, independent of their own experience, on the same technical page as we prepare to talk about more advanced concepts and practices in subsequent modules.

The purpose of the second module is to discuss advanced enology concepts to assure the practical sustainability of a commercial winemaking operation. From the proper technical design of a small winery to pertinent economic considerations, we will review major applied aspects of running a successful wine business.

The purpose of the third module is to review the winemaker's abilities to adjust and assure the desired composition and quality of a finished wine. We will discuss the major stabilization and fining techniques to guarantee an intelligent, low-input approach to modern commercial-scale winemaking.

The purpose of the fourth module is to assure that a well-crafted wine's quality is maintained throughout the final steps of processing, and beyond. A thoroughly considered filtration and bottling process lets the winemaker sleep well at night as it guarantees the wine consumer's satisfaction after opening a bottle.

The purpose of the fifth module is to look at different aspects of a fine wine's success in the marketplace. Understanding the global wine industry supply chain allows winemakers to optimize their wines' healthfulness, complexity, aging potential, and value.

The purpose of the sixth and final module is to contemplate the future of winegrowing and winemaking as we know it. This will prepare the winemaker for the inevitable adjustments to production traditions due to global warming as well as constantly changing consumer preferences.

Each module includes video lectures and supplemental materials, as well as interaction with the instructor and other students. Dr. Butzke will be available to consult on technical questions, even after participants complete the course.

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Meet the Instructor

Christian Butzke

Professor of Enology
Department of Food Science

Dr. Butzke is a professor of enology (the science of wine and winemaking), a past-president of the American Society of Enology and Viticulture and an award-winning commercial winemaker and wine competition judge. He’s the editor of the technical book “Winemaking Problems Solved” for commercial winemakers and author of the popular textbook “Wine Appreciation.”

Program At A Glance

Modality: Self-paced
Access: 1 year
Fee: $1,250

  • Indiana residents receive a discounted fee of $999 at checkout.

Who Should Enroll: Those in the wine business, whether entry-level winery workers or seasoned winemakers along with serious noncommercial winemakers.

It is advised that participants have prior or concurrent winemaking experience.

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