Davis, Calif., March 2, 2020 – Professor, author and sensory scientist Dr. Hildegarde Heymann has been a champion of sensory science as a field of study for 40 years. As such, she has seen this subject progress over time, and it has become one of her most popular classes with enology students. In June, she is being recognized as the 2020 recipient of the American Society for Enology and Viticulture’s (ASEV) highest honor, the ASEV Merit Award, at the Joint 71st ASEV National Conference and 45th ASEV Eastern Section Annual Meeting in Portland, Oregon, where attendees will have the opportunity to hear her Merit Award presentation, “Forty Years of Wine and Sensory Science.”

Dr. Heymann is a distinguished enology professor in the Department of Viticulture & Enology at the University of California, Davis, where she focuses on food-wine interactions, wine color perception, the sensory evaluation of grapes and wine, and more. She teaches courses in Sensory Evaluation of Wines, Sensometrics and Winemaking. Prior to joining UC Davis, she was a professor at the University of Missouri, where she evaluated numerous food and non-food products, including wine, meat, ice cream, cereals, juices, cat litter, soap and toothpaste.

“Broadening the understanding of winemaking from a sensory perspective is a contribution I am deeply proud of,” said Dr. Heymann. “It is a privilege to join a prestigious group of men and women whose work I have revered. With great appreciation, I am honored to be recognized by the Society and respected peers.”

Dr. Heymann received her master’s degree in Food Science (1980) and her doctorate in Agricultural and Environmental Chemistry (1986) at UC Davis. As a doctorate student, she studied under former ASEV Merit Award recipient Dr. Ann Nobel, studying the effect of methoxypyrazines on the flavor of Cabernet sauvignon wine. She is the co-author of the sensory textbook, Sensory Evaluation of Foods: Principles and Practices,” which is currently the most prescribed sensory textbook worldwide. She’s been an ASEV member since 1979 and has received numerous accolades, including: Distinguished Professor and the Ray Rossi Chair for Viticulture and Enology (2015), the IFT Sensory and Consumer Science Division Achievement Award (2015), the Elsevier Established Researcher Award at the 11th Pangborn Sensory Science Symposium (2015), ASEV Honorary Research Lecturer (2004), University of Missouri Alumni Association’s Faculty Alumni Award (2000), Missouri Graduate Professional Council’s Gold Chalk Award for Excellence in Graduate Teaching (1993), and “Professor of the Year” from the University of Missouri Food Science Association (1991 & 1993).

The ASEV Merit Award, presented since 1955, is designed to celebrate the accomplishments of an individual in the field of enology or viticulture. The yearly award acknowledges achievement or excellence in any field directly or indirectly related to enology or viticulture, including education, technology, research, management and public relations.

In 1950, ASEV was formed by researchers and California winemakers, and the first annual ASEV National Conference was born. Each meeting serves as a gathering place for industry professionals and academics to share the latest information on everything related to the sciences of winemaking and grapegrowing. The Joint 71st ASEV National Conference and 45th ASEV Eastern Section Annual Meeting will be held in Portland, Oregon, on June 15–18, 2020. For more information about this year’s conference, visit www.asev.org.


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