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2008 Southern Hemisphere Harvest

A great vintage for some, while others confronted tough conditions

Posted: May 27, 2008

Winemakers in Europe and North America are waiting for their grapes to develop, but on the southern side of the planet, the juice from this year's crop is already fermenting in the tanks. Southern Hemisphere producers grappled with rains, drought and even fire in 2008. Still, many were enthusiastic about the results.

The growing season has much to do with what a wine ultimately tastes like in the glass, and this year's conditions were all over the map, so to speak. Producers from the major wine regions have shared with us their experience of the season—what kind of weather they saw, along with what adjustments they may have had to make in the vineyards and cellar as a result—and how they think the finished wines will turn out.

Below are links to full reports on the quality and style of wines you can expect from the 2008 vintage throughout Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and South America.

Argentina
Malbec benefits from a long, cool season.

Australia
Hot weather forced many growers in the east to pick early, while western wineries had good fruit but low yields.

Chile
Yields are down; Cabernet Sauvignon and Carmenère look strong.

New Zealand
Marlborough battles rot after rains, other regions had it easier.

South Africa
A cool, wet growing season puts a premium on vineyard management.

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