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Vinnovation Announces the Next Generation of Wine Pumpover Technology

Posted on January 16, 2014


St. Helena, CA — Cutting edge winemaking tool manufacturer, Vinnovation, announces the next generation of pumpover technology with the introduction of its patent-pending LOTUS pumpover head. Since its inception in 2013, the Vinnovation team has designed and built LOTUS from the ground-up using state of the art CAD (computer-aided design) software and rapid prototyping technologies. LOTUS is made locally in the Napa Valley using stainless steel and food-grade polyurethane. By utilizing molds made with 3D printers, the company was able to efficiently produce shapes that were previously not manufacturable by standard machine tools. The resulting design is both functional and elegant, and represents a shift for the entire winemaking industry.

During the fermentation process in winemaking, carbon dioxide is produced and pushes grape skins to the top of the tank, making a ‘cap’ on top of the liquid. This cap is kept in contact with liquid as much as possible because it gives the juice color and tannins. The most common method for keeping the cap in contact with the wine is to do a pumpover, where a pump pulls juice from the bottom of the tank and pumps it over the cap for circulation. LOTUS gently and uniformly distributes juice over the cap in tanks of any size without excessive bruising or misting. This breakthrough piece of industrial design also allows an unobstructed flow of free-run wine through the device. The device is continuously adjustable, compact, has few moving parts, and is easy to install and clean.

Building LOTUS was a collaborative effort between its inventors and select local wineries. Co-creators Alex Mitchell and Evan Schneider say it was this symbiotic relationship that enabled its creation. "It was very important to us to include local winemakers and cellar masters in the testing stages of LOTUS,” said Mitchell. “They were instrumental in developing a product that is not only revolutionary in its function, but also in its ease of use.”

Vinnovation's partner wineries agree. "Its simple design means LOTUS is much lighter and less bulky than other pumpovers, which made it easy to pop the device in and out for instant height adjustments instead of wasting time with finicky extensions," said Alan Johnson, cellar master at Foley Johnson Winery. "LOTUS also spread the cap evenly and covered a wider area, which is important when you deal with large surface areas. This invention ultimately allowed us to get more grapes into the tank."

Be the first to experience this breakthrough in pumpover technology—LOTUS will be on view at both the Cellar Master Supplies and Process Engineers, Inc. tables at the upcoming Unified Wine & Grape Symposium, and is now available for preorder from York Machine Works by calling 707-963-4966 or by emailing Orders placed before Feb. 28 will receive an introductory reduced price.

About Vinnovation LLC

With a mission to locally design and manufacture revolutionary winemaking products, Vinnovation LLC was co-founded in 2013 by Alex Mitchell and Evan Schneider. The company's pilot innovation, LOTUS, is manufactured and sold by York Machine Works in St. Helena, California. For more information, visit us at

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