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Tuesday, August 19, 2014
August 19, 2014 | 2:30 PM

Selected Recent Sales of Grapes & Wines in Bulk for August 18, 2014 courtesy of Turrentine Brokerage:

Bulk Wine

Cabernet Sauvignon 2013 wine, Rutherford, 12,700 gallons at $35.00 per gallon

Cabernet Sauvignon 2013 wine, Alexander Valley, 2,000 gallons at $20.00 per gallon

Merlot 2012 wine, Chalk Hill, 3,700 gallons at $13.00 per gallon

Pinot Noir 2013 wine, California, 25,000 gallons at $6.50 per gallon

Cabernet Sauvignon 2012 wine, Lodi, 12,500 gallons at $5.75 per gallon

Cabernet Sauvignon 2013 wine, Napa Valley, 9,500 gallons at $29.00 per gallon

August 19, 2014 | 9:22 AM

Iron Horse Vineyards adds rice hulls before pressing in order to get to get more delicate, delicious juice with less pressure.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014
by Cyril Penn | August 13, 2014 | 2:08 PM

California’s wine type grape production is forecast at 3.9 million tons for 2014, down 8 percent from 2013, according to a report issued yesterday by the California Agricultural Statistics Service. That’s still a fairly big crop, however: If 3.9 million tons are crushed, 2014 will be California's third-largest ever wine-grape crop to date.

According to the report, the raisin crop is expected to be 1.95 million tons, down 13 percent from 2014, and table grape production is forecast at 1.20 million tons, down 2 percent.

CASS noted that bunch counts were reported to be down from last year’s counts and that hail during bloom negatively affected some vineyards.

The forecast is in line with Allied Grapegrowers’ earlier estimate of 3.8 to 4.0 million tons of wine-grapes in 2014, though Allied president Nat Dibuduo said he thinks the state’s forecast for Thomson grapes may be high – with the Thompson crop down by as much as 20 or even 25 percent.

The market for un-contracted grapes, meanwhile, is currently soft, according to industry sources. Dibuduo said the spot market has eased because of record harvests in 2012 and 2013. While there are currently few buyers for grapes in the San Joaquin Valley, sales of grapes are brisk along California’s north coast, however.

The softening of the spot market has been attributed to the large 2012 and 2013 harvests.

Drought is a factor in 2014 and could be an even bigger issue for wine grape production in 2015.

“I’m definitely concerned about next year’s crop if we have another dry year,” Dibuduo said.


Friday, August 8, 2014
August 8, 2014 | 9:18 AM

An aerial video of Philip Carter Winery. Video Production Credit: Jimmy Olivero and the entire staff at SkycamUSA

Tuesday, August 5, 2014
August 5, 2014 | 4:03 PM

Selected Recent Sales of Grapes & Wines in Bulk for August 4, 2014 courtesy of Turrentine Brokerage:

Bulk Wine

Cabernet Sauvignon 2013 wine, Paso Robles, 19,500 gallons at $10.00 per gallon

Chardonnay 2013 wine, Russian River, 4,800 gallons at $12.00 per gallon

Zinfandel 2013 wine, Dry Creek Valley, 4,300 gallons at $9.50 per gallon

Cabernet Sauvignon 2013 wine, Oakville, 14,900 gallons at $28.00 per gallon

Petite Sirah 2013 wine, Lodi, 6,500 gallons at $5.50 per gallon


Sauvignon Blanc 2014 grapes, Dry Creek Valley, 22 tons at $1,600.00 per ton

Chardonnay 2014 grapes, Mendocino County, 44 tons at $1,100.00 per ton

Monday, August 4, 2014
by Cyril Penn | August 4, 2014 | 5:50 PM

There’s a lot happening in Suisan Valley right now. The AVA comprises some 15,000 acres, with roughly 3,000 acres planted. It’s possible that planted acreage could increase substantially in the next few years. The region isn’t far from Napa, which is basically planted out, and Suisun Valley is known for producing good grapes with relatively large yields. There’s also reasonably good access to water. Three new boutique wineries are just getting off the ground in Suisun now that they’ve got their wastewater discharge permits. Solano County is home to two dozen wineries

Now comes word from industry sources that Modesto-based E&J Gallo Winery is poised to buy Winterhawk Winery, although John Segale, a spokesman for E&J Gallo, said there has been no purchase.

Well so far, at least. ... A deal, if finalized, would see E&J Gallo expanding on its recent purchase of Ledgewood Creek, as the properties are contiguous.

When Gallo purchased Ledgwood Creek earlier this year, it shut down the tasting room. Some saw that as a blow to a valley that’s been struggling to become more of a destination. Others see Gallo’s move to Suisun as a big boost. “They’re going to be a good neighbor here,” one source commented. “Between that and Chuck Wagner leasing everything he can get his hands on: He has picked up a number of leased properties, and seems to be testing all the corners of the AVA.” (Caymus announced plans to build a winery in Suisun Valley last summer).


by Erin Guenther | August 4, 2014 | 11:23 AM

Last month I was fortunate enough to visit the cork oak forest in Portugal to see the harvest. There are about 2.1 million hectares of cork forest in the world, more than 730,000 of which are in Portugal. In the last 10 to 15 years, more than 130,000 hectares of cork oak have been planted in the country, and there are a number of reforestation programs in place. Below are some photos from the 2014 harvest:

Thursday, July 31, 2014
July 31, 2014 | 1:24 PM

This Vine video comes from the Napa Valley Vintners. " target="_blank">Harvest 2014 is underway! 

Monday, July 28, 2014
July 28, 2014 | 2:11 PM

Wine Business Monthly's 10th Varietal Focus features Merlot, and the tasting is happening right now! For each Varietal Focus article, contributing writer/winemaker Lance Cutler selects a varietal, picks three regions known for that variety and invites three winemakers from each region to participate in discussing their vineyard and winemaking practices as well as taste and critique each other's wines.

The tasting today is happening at Januik Winery in Woodinville, Washington. The Merlot Varietal Focus features wines from Napa, Washington and the North Fork of Long Island. The winemakers attending the tasting today are all from Washington:

Mike and Andrew Januik - Januik Winery, Kevin Mott - Woodward Canyon Winery and Casey McClellan - Seven Hills Winery. Merlots from each of these Washington wineries are being tasted in addition to: Duckhorn Vineyards, Provenance Vineyards and Burgess Cellars from Napa; Bedell Cellars, Blackbird from Anthony Nappa Wines and Shinn Estate Vineyards from the North Folk of Long Island.

Pictured from left to right: Kevin Mott, Lance Cutler,, Andrew Januik, Mary Jorgensen,
Casey McClellan and Mike Januik

Wine Business Monthly's popular Varietal Focus Series is published twice a year in the January and September issues. The Merlot edition will be published in the January 2015 issue of WBM. Go to the WBM archives page to check out past Varietal Focuses, including, Syrah: (Feb 2011), Pinot Noir: (Sept 2011), Chardonnay: (Jan 2012), Zinfandel: (Sept. 2012), Cabernet Sauvignon: (Jan 2013), Red Blends: (Sept 2013), Riesling: (Jan 2014) and Grenache (coming Sept. 2014). Click here to subscribe to WBM.

July 28, 2014 | 11:06 AM

Jennifer Wall ‏@BarefootJenWall:

Last night marked the official start of harvest! Sunset harvesting: #champagne #chardonnay #harvest2014

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