natural disasters

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News & Features  :  Unfiltered

Struggling Bordelais Take to the Streets

Plus, drought-stricken California vintners turn to the divining rod, and a new Cape wine auction raises $644,000 for charity

Posted: March 20, 2014  

Blogs  :  Exploring Wine with Tim Fish

California Is Finally All Wet

Big weekend storm gives hope to winemakers, particularly in Northern California

Posted: February 12, 2014  By Tim Fish

The first major storm in more than a year swept through Northern California over the weekend, and the sound heard in the skies wasn't thunder, but a sigh of collective relief.

Napa Valley and Sonoma County averaged about 8 inches in a few days, with some areas gaining as much as 12 to 15 inches. Central California wasn't as blessed, receiving no more than an inch or so.

The drought is far from over even in Northern California—rainfall levels are still below the previous record drought year of 1977—but you won't hear any complaints right now.

News & Features  :  Unfiltered

Giant Boulders Bowl Through Italian Vineyard

Plus, the FBI captures Napa's most wanted wine embezzler in Mexico, John Boehner prefers wine to the presidency, wine experiments at the bottom of Lake Geneva and more

Posted: January 30, 2014  

News & Features  :  News

California Wineries Confront Historic Drought

With no rain in sight, reservoirs are empty and vintners fear a small crop even before the vines wake up

Posted: January 21, 2014  By James Laube, Tim Fish

Blogs  :  Exploring Wine with Tim Fish

Is There Rain on the Horizon for California’s Vineyards?

2013 was the driest year on record, and 2014 is one big question mark

Posted: January 15, 2014  By Tim Fish

California is thirsty—and not for wine. It barely rained in 2013, and the wine industry is worried.

How bad is it? Some of the growing regions in Napa Valley got less rain than Las Vegas. Paso Robles, on the California Central Coast, got 1.92 inches of rain in 2013 instead of the average 12.78, according to the National Weather Service. By comparison, Death Valley got 2.17 inches.

That makes 2013 the driest year on record in California, and the records go back to about 1880. Droughts are nothing new here, but this is a new level of parched. It doesn't help that 2012 was an exceptionally dry year as well.

News & Features  :  News

Hurricane-Ravaged New York Wine Storage Company Liquidated

Fourteen months after Sandy damaged WineCare's cellars, customers hope to finally see their wines again

Posted: December 31, 2013  By Ben O'Donnell

Learn Wine  :  Ask Dr. Vinny

How can I get insurance for my wine collection?

Posted: December 20, 2013  

Oct. 31, 2013 Issue  :  News

Hail Devastates French Vineyards

Posted: October 31, 2013  By Suzanne Mustacich, Ben O'Donnell, Bruce Sanderson

News & Features  :  News

Chilean Wine Producers Hit by Frost

Chardonnay and Pinot Noir buds damaged by freezing nights, but winemakers say it's too early to panic

Posted: October 16, 2013  By Mitch Frank

Blogs  :  Bruce Sanderson Decanted

Burgundy’s Catch-22

A special derogation allows growers to buy grapes. Or not

Posted: September 27, 2013  By Bruce Sanderson

On Sept. 24, the prefecture of the Côte d'Or passed a bylaw allowing growers in Burgundy who were affected by the July 23 hailstorm to purchase grapes or must from the 2013 harvest to make up for the loss of their crop.

News & Features  :  Unfiltered

Fire Destroys Bergström's Equipment, Wine Collection

Plus, a controversial winemaker incites a boycott, wine as Virgil drank it, and more

Posted: August 29, 2013  

News & Features  :  News

Bordeaux Suffers More Hail, Hurting Small Grapegrowers

A second storm in a week savages vines; many farmers are uninsured

Posted: August 7, 2013  By Suzanne Mustacich

News & Features  :  News

Storms Batter Vineyards in Bordeaux and Champagne

Hail reduces yields in top Champagne sites as well as Bordeaux's Right Bank

Posted: July 30, 2013  By Suzanne Mustacich

News & Features  :  Unfiltered

Every Day Is a Wining Road for Sheryl Crow

The singer has partnered with Sonoma's Chateau St. Jean. Plus: Celebs compete in a Korbel spray-off, a quake rocks New Zealand, Paul Hobbs goes to Virginia, Bill Koch goes to court (again) and there's a new nude label

Posted: July 25, 2013  

News & Features  :  News

Hail Rips Burgundy's Côte de Beaune Region

Growers assess damage after the largest storm in decades

Posted: July 25, 2013  By Bruce Sanderson

News & Features  :  Unfiltered

Sauvignon Blanc Lost at Sea

Plus, Sideways on stage, World War II wine, and Iron Horse's Joy Sterling gets appointed to California's Board of Food and Agriculture

Posted: July 18, 2013  

News & Features  :  News

French Wine Regions Slammed by Hailstorms

Vouvray is reeling from a historically brutal storm; Chinon and Cahors hit as well

Posted: June 27, 2013  By Ben O'Donnell

Blogs  :  James Laube's Wine Flights

Marcassin's 2008 Pinot Noir Goes Up in Smoke

Owner John Wetlaufer has announced that Marcassin will not release its 2008 Pinot Noir due to smoke taint

Posted: May 23, 2013  By James Laube

The summer 2008 wildfires in Sonoma County have claimed another victim: Marcassin Pinot Noir.

The winery has decided not to release its 2008 vintage, it announced in its latest newsletter. "We are passing on the 2008 Pinot Noirs," wrote John Wetlaufer, who owns the Sonoma winery with his wife, winemaker Helen Turley.

News & Features  :  Wine in History

California Vintner Discovers Ancient Roman Wine Exporter

When not making Santa Lucia Highlands Pinot at Wrath, archaeologist Michael Thomas leads a team that discovered a wine "négociant" outside Pompeii

Posted: May 6, 2013  By Ben O'Donnell

April 30, 2013 Issue  :  News

$2 Million of Wine in Hurricane Limbo

Posted: April 30, 2013  By Ben O'Donnell

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