Monday, August 27, 2007

Cold summer forces earliest French wine harvest on record

We've posted on wine and climate change (I was about to type Global Warming). Rather than linking the posts, if you would be so kind, use the blog search box for: wine. Here's the story from the Independent. Our best solution to date? Buy the 2005's soon, they're getting pricey.

The first bunches of grapes for the manufacture of champagne will be snipped in north-eastern France today - one of the earliest wine harvests ever recorded. Despite miserable weather across much of France in June, July and August - which will greatly reduce the amount of wine produced - the 2007 vendanges, or grape-picking, will be two to three weeks ahead of the normal timetable in most of the country.

The mild winter and the hot weather in April and May gave the grapes a flying start. The wet summer, which produced savage attacks of mildew in some vineyards, has not prevented an early harvest.

Even the reduction in yields - likely to be down 5 to 6 per cent on an average year - is good news, for producers. Vineyards growing the cheapest table wines, in huge surplus worldwide, have been worst affected by the mildew and the wet, cold summer....MORE