The Godfather of Fermentation
On this day in April in 1858, Louis Pasteur published his findings on fermentation, significantly advancing the science of winemaking. Pasteur’s research in the 1850’s led to the discovery of single-celled fungi called yeasts which metabolized grape sugars, resulting in alcohol. Previously, winemakers understood very little about the chemical mechanisms behind fermentation. Pasteur also solved one of the food industry’s biggest economic problems: spoilage. He recommended a gentle heating process—it would later be named pasteurization after him—that stopped bacteria from growing.