As an associate Cooperative Extension specialist in viticulture with the UC Davis Department of Viticulture and Enology, S. Kaan Kurtural is well versed in helping grape growers solve real-world production issues. “It is very satisfying to see the results of hard work,” said Kurtural, who grew up on a raisin ranch and whose research focuses on understanding whole grapevine physiology in order to improve agricultural practices and adapt to ecological stresses. Kurtural is the instructor of Establishing and Managing a Small Vineyard.
Kurtural describes his teaching style as participatory, where there is an expectation that students will actively engage in class discussions. He also wants students to come away from the class with the ability to manage their small vineyard without outside consultation. “This class is important because there are so many myths surrounding wine grape production,” Kurtural said. “I hope the class will lift the doubts and provide a good skill set for students to manage their small vineyards.”