Wine Library & Vinoteque

The UBC Wine Library, housed in the Food, Nutrition and Health Building, has the capacity for long term storage of over 20,000 bottles of wine under optimal conditions.  It currently holds over 4,500 bottles comprised of three major collections and a number of smaller collections, all of which have been donated to the University by vintners or private collectors.

Shortly after the Library was established in 2002, several wineries in the Okanagan Valley donated two cases each of selected wines to establish which grape varietals do best in specific microclimates in BC, and to study the long-term aging abilities of those wines.  Wines in this collection were primarily from the 1998-2001 vintages.  From 2003 to 2008, bottles from each winery were opened and analyzed for aroma and flavor compounds by GC/MS and LC/MS, and evaluated for organoleptic properties through sensory analyses by an expert panel.  Results of the chemical analyses were published in 2019 (Bejaei et al. Beverages 2019, 5, 57; doi: 10.3390/beverages5030057).


A second collection consists of highly-prized 1st and 2nd growth French wines from Bordeaux and Burgundy, including some of the most acclaimed wines such as Chateau Latour (dating back to the 1945 vintage) and Domaine de la Romanee-Conti.   All of these wines have been donated by private collectors, who receive tax receipts based on the appraised value of the wines.

A third collection consists of Napa Valley (California) Cabernet Sauvignons and Merlots from 1990-2000.  The Wine Library also has smaller collections of (i) Canadian icewine and international dessert wines; (ii) champagne;  and (iii) vintage port.

The Wine Library has a tasting salon seating up to ten with the ability to entertain fully catered lunches or dinners.

Distinguished Visitors to Professor van Vuuren’s laboratory and the UBC Wine Library:  2001-2017

Nobel Laureates

Dr. Randy Sheckman
Dr. Paul Nurse
Dr. Sydney Brenner
Dr. John Sulston

Other important visitors

Dr. Gerald Fink, MIT
Dr. Mike Snyder, Yale
Dr. David Botstein, Princeton
Dr. Jim Broach, Princeton
Dr. Michael Stevenson, President, Simon Frazer University
Dr. Suzanne Fortier, President NSERC
James Halliday, Master of Wine, Australia
John Salvi, Master of Wine, France
Dr. Linda Bisson, UC Davis
Dr. Sakkie Pretorius, VP Academic, Macquarie University, Australia
Dr. Dan Johnson, Director, Australian Wine Research Institute
Dr. Richard Gardener, University of Auckland, NZ
Dr. Terrance Cooper, University of Memphis
Dr. Mark Thomas, CSIRO-Adelaide, Australia
Dr. Reinhard Topfer, Geiweilerhof Siebeldingen, Germany
Dr. Keith Mitchelson, Australian Genome Research Facility (AGRF), Brisbane, Queensland, Australia
Dr. Charlie Boone, Banting and Best Institute, University of Toronto
Dr. Brenda Andrews, Banting and Best Institute, University of Toronto
Dr. Ritchie Younger
Dr. Bruce Forster
Dr. Doyle Rogers, Monaco
Sid Cross, Lawyer and wine specialist
David Leslie, Australia
Dr. Steve Oliver, University of Manchester
Art Caputti, Director E&J Gallo
Philippe Bascaules, Head Wine Maker, Ch. Margaux
Ike Barber
Stu and Marilyn Blusson
Anthony von Mandle
Dr. Jay Keeling, UC Berkeley
Ken Cross
Haig Farris
Spud Matthews 

Canadian Government

The Hon. Bill Graham, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Minister of National Defence
The Hon. Michelle Rimple, Federal Member of Parliament

Senior executives at UBC

Dr. Stephen Toope
Dr. Arvind Gupta
Dr. John Hepburn
Dr. David Farrar
Dr. Don Brooks

Deans at UBC

Dr. Murray Isman, LFS
Dr. Dan Muzyka, Sauder School of Business
Dr. Michael Coughtrie, Pharmaceutical Sciences
Dr. John Innes, Forestry
Dr. Dermot Kelleher, Medicine