Winemaker Kaihanga Waina

Winemakers make wine from grapes and other fruit.

Winemakers may do some or all of the following:

  • discuss fruit quality and quantity with grape growers (viticulturists) throughout the growing season
  • develop new wine styles and improve the wine quality
  • process grapes to make wine
  • control fermentation and adjust wines as needed
  • ensure legal standards and specifications are met, such as alcohol level requirements in New Zealand or the country of export
  • filter, bottle and package the wine for sale
  • maintain winemaking equipment and machinery
  • manage winery workers
  • use software to track grape health and growth 
  • record procedures, blends and inventories
  • market and sell wine.

Physical Requirements

Winemakers need to have an above average sense of taste and smell.

Useful Experience

Useful experience for winemakers includes:

  • vineyard experience
  • laboratory experience in breweries or dairy factories
  • experience in wine sales, tasting or serving.

Personal Qualities

Winemakers need to have:

  • good communication skills
  • an eye for detail
  • ability to problem solve and work under pressure
  • practical and creative skills
  • business, management and marketing skills.

Useful Experience

Useful experience for winemakers includes:

  • vineyard experience
  • laboratory experience in breweries or dairy factories
  • experience in wine sales, tasting or serving.

Subject Recommendations

A minimum of three years of secondary education is recommended. Useful subjects include chemistry, maths, physics and processing technologies.

Winemakers can earn around $38K to $83K per year per year.

Chances of getting a job as a Winemaker are good due to a shortage of people interested in this type of work.

Winemakers may progress to set up their own vineyard, or move into chief winemaker management roles.

Winemaker

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