Texas Tech University

Regional Site News

TTU at Fredericksburg Hosts Hill Country Wine Symposium

by Kelly Podzemny

The Hill Country University Center and Texas Tech University Higher Education Teaching Site at Fredericksburg (TTU at Fredericksburg) hosted the inaugural Hill Country Wine Symposium on March 24 and 25. More than 100 grape and winemaking professionals from across the state were in attendance.

The event organized by Texas Hill Country Wineries brought in expert speakers from across Texas and California to lecture on a variety of issues related to winemaking and grape growing. Sessions covered topics such as the business of wine in Texas, barrel care, vineyard management and more. Grape growers had the opportunity to share wines from their vineyards with wineries looking for more fruit. And exhibitor tables introduced new vendors to wineries and growers.

One winemaker who spoke on the industry expert panel was Don Brady of Robert Hall Winery in California. Brady graduated from Texas Tech University's main campus in Lubbock with a degree in Horticulture in 1984 and once worked for Llano Estacado Winery. In 1991, he was awarded the Texas Wine and Grape Growers Association's highest honor—the "Louis F. Qualia" Award for outstanding contributions and leadership in the Texas wine industry. Since moving to California in 2001, Brady has won many more awards .

TTU at Fredericksburg features an on-site teaching vineyard and state-of-the-art wine labs. The Plant & Soil Sciences degree with a specialization in Viticulture & Enology is the only four-year undergraduate program in Texas focused on the science and technology of grape and wine production. In addition, two non-academic certificates in Texas Viticulture and Texas Winemaking are offered. 

Rhyne and Brady Fredericksburg Wine CountryBénédicte Rhyne and
Don Brady
Teaching VineyardTTU at Fredericksburg's
teaching vineyard
Barrel Repair WorkshopThe barrel repair & care
demonstration on day one