A festival celebrating small-lot artisan winemakers has given $20,000 to Cal Poly’s wine and viticulture department, its fourth contribution to the program in as many years.
On Jan. 16, Garagiste Festival co-founders Stewart McLennan and Doug Minnick presented the check, which represents a portion of proceeds from its 2014 events, to department head Marianne McGarry Wolf and wine and viticulture lecturer Shohreh Niku, according to a Garagiste Festival news release.
“A huge part of our mission is to further the education of future winemakers,” Minnick said in the release. “We have many (alumni) of the program among the exceptional winemakers pouring at our festivals and could not be more proud to be part of helping shape the future of our industry, starting with its next generation of winemakers.”
The Garagiste Festival previously donated $10,000 to Cal Poly’s wine and viticulture program in 2011, $10,000 in 2012 and $15,000 in 2013. The most recent donation was used to purchase spectrophotometers, the release said, used in winemaking to predict fermentation stages and measure acid and sugar content.
Launched in Paso Robles in 2011, the Garagiste Festival focuses on so-called “garagiste” winemakers who craft less than 1,500 cases of wine a year, often in their garages or basements.
In 2015, it will hold three events in Southern California: Garagiste Festival: Southern Exposure, March 27 to 29 in Solvang; Garagiste Festival: Urban Exposure, June 27 in Los Angeles; and Garagiste Festival: Paso Robles, Nov. 5 to 8 in Paso Robles.
For more information, visit http://garagistefestival.com.