Video: Clark Smith on Why Some Wines are Like Angelina Jolie

What is Postmodern Winemaking?

What a terrific chat with Clark Smith, Winemaker and Author!

Click on the arrow above to watch the video.


Our guest this evening has created a firestorm in the wine industry, dividing winemakers and wine lovers around the idea of wine manipulation.

Clark will explain how some of the hottest new technologies help winemaking, and how splitting the atom changed the way we make wine and altered our perception of what a white wine is supposed to be.

Clark Smith has spent four decades as a winemaker, author, inventor, musician, and professor to the wine industry around the world.

A product of M.I.T. and U. C. Davis, he has trained over 4,000 winemaking professionals.

The IQ Conference named him 2016 Innovator of the Year and he holds several patents for innovative winemaking techniques. His book Postmodern Winemaking, Wine and Spirits Magazine’s 2013 Book of the Year

Welcome to the Sunday Sipper Club Clark!



Here’s a sampling of our lively discussion from our tasting…

Gwen Barton40:38 I see some are actually selling wine in a can (like a pop can)- meh- they have a ways to go with this one
Paul E Hollander37:56 What made you think of reverse osmosis? I’ve studied that for making potable water.

Elaine Bruce12:19 What was your favorite or most memorial innovation – can you share ?


Lori Kilmartin28:45 I like Clark’s wine rack – does he stock it with anything in particular ?
Elaine Bruce17:10 oh my gosh – I love it ! Thank you !



Clark Smith

We’ll chat about how Postmodern Winemaking has created a firestorm in the wine industry, dividing winemakers and wine lovers around the idea of wine manipulation.

Clark will explain how some of the hottest new technologies help winemaking, and how splitting the atom changed the way we make wine and altered our perception of what a white wine is supposed to be.

We’ll explore the Four Methods to make white wine.


Clark Smith

Clark Smith, winemaker for his own WineSmith label and several other brands, has dedicated four decades to being a consulting winemaker, author, inventor, musician, and professor to the wine industry throughout the globe.

A product of M.I.T. and U. C. Davis, he has founded and managed four prominent start-ups and consulted for thousands of wineries and other craft beverage producers and suppliers throughout the world.

He holds patents for volatile acidity (VA) removal and alcohol adjustment via reverse osmosis.

The IQ Conference named him 2016 Innovator of the Year. His ground-breaking Postmodern Winemaking Symposium format, which brings together 100 experienced experts for a lecture-free round-table discussion, is among the Wine Industry’s most celebrated events.

Clark Smith and Gary Mangels

Founding Winemaker for R. H. Phillips in the 1980s, Clark Smith began WineSmith Consulting in 1990 and founded Vinovation, Inc. in 1992 to commercialize new winemaking technologies including ultra-filtration and micro-oxygenation.






Chateau Pipeau 2012
St. Emilion, Bordeaux A.O.C., France







Author of Wine and Spirits magazine’s 2013 Book of the Year, the revolutionary Postmodern Winemaking from U.C. Press, his popular “Fundamentals of Modern Wine Chemistry” short course created at UC Davis has trained over 4,000 winemaking professionals since 1984.

Smith directs the Best of Appellation awards for, teaches at CSU Fresno and Florida International University, and is considered one of the world’s foremost experts on pairing wine with music.

Winemaking Consultant. Wine production R&D, quality assessment (particularly corks), oxygen and reduction stability and troubleshooting, vineyard/sensory research. Small winery management and start-up.

Author / Journalist. Postmodern Winemaking, UC Press. Wine evaluation panels, competitions, articles and video talent/editing.

Teaching and Research: Adjunct Professorships at CSU Fresno and Florida International University. Fundamentals of Wine Chemistry (UC Davis 1984-2008, privately 2008-date). Research on mapping of American wine regional flavor profiles, membrane applications for winemaking, oxidation/reduction, waste management and nutraceutical recovery, and cognitive studies on consumer wine appreciation.






Serge & Bruno Sourdais Le Logis De La Bouchardière Chinon 2015
Loire A.C., France







Areas of specialization:
– Wine chemistry and microbiology
– Wine and must additions such as pH correction and brix dilution
– Brettanomyces management
– Oxygenation techniques
– Sulfite-free wine production
– Applications of reverse osmosis, ultrafiltration or other tangential flow membrane systems
– Cork and closure quality control

– Alcohol Adjustment
– Wine treatment recommendations
– Grape maturity determination
– Grape varietal planting choices
– Making wines and development of new brands
– Wine evaluation
– Wine and music matching for specific wines or background music for tasting rooms & restaurants

2016 Wine Business Monthly Innovator of the Year.
2014 Founder, GrapeCraft Wine Academy.
2013 Keynote speaker, Digital Wine Communicators Conference, La Rioja, Spain.
2011 – 2015 Member Wine Science Forum Blue Ribbon Panel on wine oxygen measurement.
2012 – PRESENT Adjunct Professor, Chaplin School of Hospitality Management, Florida International University
2010 USAID delegation to the Georgian Republic.
2009 – 2015 Columnist, “The Postmodern Winemaker” Wines and Vines Magazine
2008 – PRESENT Director of Best of Appellation Evaluations, Senior contributing Editor. Oversee production.
Chronicle America’s 307 AVA’s through tastings, touring, articles, video and TV feature productions.






Domaine Salmon Grande Réserve Muscadet Sèvre & Maine Sur Lie 2014
Loire A.C., France







2007 – PRESENT Winemaker, Diamond Ridge Vineyards, Two Jakes of Diamonds.
2004 – PRESENT Owner, CEO and winemaker for GrapeCraft Wines, LLC. Oversee production and sales of WineSmith and other brands as well as private labels and client brands.
1996 – 2004 Represented the United States as a member of the Groupe d’Experts sûr la Technologie du Vin for the O.I.V. in Paris.
Direct R&D and Admin. for firm specializing in providing wine production applications of micro-oxygenation, reverse osmosis, distillation and ultrafiltration to remove volatile acidity, adjust alcohol, process juice and wine.
Mobile services and custom equipment manufacture.

Wine production education for continuing education, and brand concept consulting for start-up winery projects, winery design, crush consulting, troubleshooting, and bulk wine negociants.
1990-1993 Glen Ellen R&D Director: Non-alcoholic wine product development, flavor recovery, International Imagery project coordinator, Educational Center feasibility study, and Quality Symposium speaker. Vineyard development, Cork QC expert, lecturer on wine chemistry fundamentals, advanced winemaking and postmodern winemaking.
2000 – PRESENT ADJUNCT PROFESSOR, CSU FRESNO Lectures on wine chemistry and wine technology.
1991 – 2003 INSTRUCTOR, NAPA VALLEY COLLEGE Advanced Winemaking, Technology Hot Topics.
1984 – 2008 EXTENSION LECTURER, UC DAVIS Highly successful short course on Fundamentals of Wine Chemistry.

1983-1989 WINEMAKER/CO-FOUNDER/PARTNER, R.H. Phillips Vineyard.
Responsible for production of all wines. Created the Phillips wine style; designed, built and enlarged the winery; responsible for all blends, racking, QC, procurement, equipment selection, grape purchases, off-site processing, government compliance and budgeting. Negotiated all grape sales, oversaw Grape Quality Research Program and vineyard sampling, proposed new plantings. Managed sales in four states, wrote propaganda, poured tastings and Meet-the-Winemaker events, appeared on TV, responsible for interaction with the press. Brought Phillips from
4,000 to 200,000 cases on $20,000 cash without significant losses.
1980-83 STUDENT, BS and MS Enology programs, UC Davis.
1977-79 CELLAR SUPERVISOR, Veedercrest Vineyards, Emeryville, CA.
1971-77 RETAIL WINE SALESMAN, Jackson’s Wines, Oakland, and others.
1965-71 COOK and WAITER, various restaurants.






Cave Spring Cellars Cabernet Franc 2015
Niagara Escarpment Ontario VQA, Canada







M.S. in Enology (pending), UC Davis. Assisted Dr. Roger Boulton.
B.S. in Fermentation Science, UC Davis, Highest Honors.
Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 1969-71.
High School, Indian Springs School, 1965 – 69.
Eagle Scout, 1968.

1983 – PRESENT Lectures on wine technology, wine structure, postmodern principles, cognitive enology and a wide variety of wine-related topics to venues on six continents.
2012 – PRESENT Online FIU class: Wine Technology, Marketing and Merchandising.
2017 President, Redwood Chordsmen Barbershop Harmony Chapter, Santa Rosa and Barbershopper Of The Year.
1995 – 2003 O.I.V. GROUPE D’EXPERTS SUR LA TECHNOLOGIE DU VIN Specialization in reverse osmosis, ultrafiltration, alcohol adjustment, postmodern viticulture. Conducted joint research on volatile acidity removal with U Bordeaux, U Catalan, Geisenheim, Trier, Napa College and U Asti. During this period, delivered lectures in hundreds of venues worldwide including Australian Wine Research Institute, Florida Intl U, U SW Missouri, Academie du Vin in Tokyo, U Stellenbach, Brock U, and the OIV Congrès Mondial in Bratislava, Mainz and Montpelier.”Volatile Acidity Reduction Using Reverse Osmosis” 1997

1995 U.S. Patent for removal of acetic acid or ethanol from wine via reverse osmosis.
WINE JUDGE, SF Chronicle, Orange, San Diego, Riverside, SF, Alameda, Humboldt and Lodi County Fairs, State Fair (Home Winemakers), West Coast, Long Beach, Jefferson Cup, Michigan and New World Wine Competitions.
CONSULTING EDITOR, Practical Winery and Vineyard Magazine, Vineyard and Winery Management Magazine.
COMMITTEE CHAIRMAN, 1987-1991, Cork Quality/Packaging Quality Committee, California Enological Research Assn. (C.E.R.A.)
Instructor, Napa Valley School of Cellaring, California State Fair.
Topics: Fundamentals of Wine Chemistry, Sulfite Sensitivity, Brettanomyces, Experimental Design, Sensory Evaluation, Méthode Champenoise, Phenolic Chemistry, Cold Stabilization, Grape Quality Experimentation, Wine/Food Pairing, Pre-Crush Training, and Advanced Winemaking.






Dr. Pauly Bergweiler Riesling Feinherb 2016
Mosel Qualitätswein, Germany












Kim Crawford Sauvignon Blanc 2015
Marlborough, South Island, New Zealand







Postmodern Winemaking, U.C. Press 2013. Wine and Spirits Magazine Book of the Year.
Monthly column “The Postmodern Winemaker” in Wines and Vines magazine since 2009.
TONG magazine: “Ripeness Redux” 2011 Many articles.
Best of Appellation wine evaluations and articles on 79 AVAs in the U.S. and Canada 2009
Critiquing the Critics: The Wine Judging Revolution” 2009
Yeast Inoculation – Threat or Menace?” 2008
Natural Wine: Choosing Your Priorities” 2008
Spoofulated or Artisanal?” 2007
Some Like It Hot: The History of Alcohol Levels in California Wines” 2007
TONG magazine, Ripeness Issue April 2010 “Liquid Music
Practical Winery and Vineyard Magazine
Probing Reductive Strength in Bottled Wine” 2009.
Finding the Stopper for Cork Aroma Taint” 1992
Hand harvesting at night” 1985.
SO2: The limits of our understanding” 1984.
Enology Briefs, “Sulfur dioxide basics” inaugural and second issues, 1982.
Vineyard & Winery Management Magazine
The Crossflow Comix” 1998
An Inexpensive Diagnosis for High pH/High TA” 1996
Does UC Davis have a Theory of Deliciousness?” 1995
Setting Up Your Own Distilled Spirits Plant License” 1994
Play It Safe: Keep an Eye on Urea Levels!” 1993
Australian Grapegrower and Winemaker Magazine
New technology for volatile acidity reduction provides remedy for many stuck fermentations” 1997
Presentations at Annual Meetings of American Society for Enology and Viticulture:
Wine Quality Enhancement Techniques” (Cool Climate Symposium) 1996
Chardonnay and the Theory of Deliciousness” (Unified Symposium) 1996
Acetic acid as a causative agent in stuck fermentations,” 1993 (Published Vol. 46 No. 2, pp 278-80, 1995, J. ASEV)
Effects of cold stabilization on sensory properties of chardonnay wine,” 1992
Factors Affecting Cork Quality” (Pacific NW Chapter) 1992
Cork aroma taint in California wines,” 1991
Sulfite toxicity of Brettanomyces custersii,” 1990.
Individual sensitivities to SO2 in a white wine,” 1990
Series of six papers investigating effects of vineyard practices on wine sensory qualities, 1984-89.
Presentation at Wine Tech/Grape Tech: High Tech Filtrations Come of Age” 1998
Presentations at Australian Wine Industry Technical Conference:
“Reverse Osmosis Applications to Adjust Alcohol and Reduce Volatile Acidity” 1996

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