Boots On the Ground: A Masterclass in Sustainable Viticulture & LODI RULES

  • Date

    May 17, 2021

  • Deadline

    April 11, 2021, 11:00 PM (Pacific)

    This event has concluded. Click on “learn more and apply” for a link to a recording of the full webinar.
  • Location


  • Sponsor

    Lodi Winegrape Commission

This session has concluded.

View a recording of the masterclass here.

Congratulations to the competition winners:

1st Place, Phillip Anderson, CBC Bevco, Davis, CA

2nd Place, Sunhee Park, Wally’s Beverly Hills, Los Angeles, CA

3rd Place, Juan Hoyos, Wine Bar George, Kissimmee, FL


Join us for a collaboration between SommFoundation and the Lodi Winegrape Commission, presented by Elaine Chukan Brown.

Panelists will include Elaine Chukan Brown, Madelyn Kolber (Sustainability Director, KG Vineyard Management and Ripken Vineyards), Phil Abba (owner and grower, Abba Vineyards), Aaron Lange (VP of Vineyard Operations, LangeTwins Family Winery & Vineyards), and Kevin Phillips (VP of Operations, Michael David Winery and Phillips Farms). Topics will include climate, soil, elevation, and location, introduction to LODI RULES (history, core tenets, certification process, and its influence on other sustainability programs in the US).

Thirty people will be selected to receive wine for this masterclass. Each participant will also be given one year’s access to SommFoundation’s SommGeo. The seminar will take place Monday, May 17th, from 10:00 AM to 12:00 PM PDT. Following the seminar, all registered attendees will be granted access to an online timed test covering information from the masterclass. The top three scorers will receive one year’s access to SommFoundation’s SommGeo and the following scholarships (to be applied toward wine education and certification):

1st place: $1,000
2nd place: $750
3rd Place: $500

*** Please note – the scholarship competition will be open to the general public. Persons associated with the Lodi Winegrape Commission or its members or employees or associates are welcome to participate in the sessions and test, but are not eligible for scholarship awards.***

Sustainable winegrowing brings together growers with a commitment to the long-term health of their vines and producers with the thirst for distinctive vineyard expression. This seminar will dig into the unique perspective that goes into farming for both quality and longevity in one of California’s most important and dynamic growing regions. What began in 1992 as a grassroots education program in Lodi later became LODI RULES – the first comprehensive and, arguably, most rigorous sustainability standard in the country. Today, LODI RULES serves as the inspiration and basis for numerous other programs around the world. During our two-hour seminar, we will look at what makes LODI RULES such an effective guide for quality viticulture and how this translates to higher quality wine. Moderated by Elaine Chukan Brown, the panel will include growers from Lodi who are leading the way in sustainability, quality winemaking, habitat restoration, water reclamation, and more. We will taste wines from their certified vineyards and will discuss the connection between attentive farming, thoughtful viticulture, and exceptional wine.


  • Court of Master Sommeliers Certified level (or its equivalent) or higher
  • Currently (or within the last 12 months) employed in sales or service field within the wine/hospitality industry
  • Must work and reside in the United States.

*** Please note – we are not able to ship wine to the following states: Alaska, Hawaii, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Utah. If you live in these states, you are welcome to apply, but you will not receive the wine.

About the Lodi Winegrape Commission:

Established in 1991, the Lodi Winegrape Commission proudly represents 750 growers farming over 100,000 acres of winegrapes. Leading programs in marketing, education, research, and sustainable viticulture, the Commission is successfully moving the Lodi region forward as a high quality, environmentally and socially conscious production area. Find out more here.

Deadline to apply: April 11th, 11pm Pacific

If you wish to register for the webinar as a member of the public and do not want submit an application, you may sign up for attendance here: