Thursday, September 11, 2014

Global Warming and Wine Changing

Not that anyone would remember, but you connoisseurs of fine wine may recall a massive heat wave that ripped through Europe back in 2003. It ruined months worth of work in the famous regions of France where some of the world's best wine comes from. Ever since then, it's been a growing concern and threat for farmers to find ways to fend off the inevitable,,, the world-wide threat of "global warming."

Maybe Al Gore was on to something when the inconvenient truth finally surfaced, but researchers are now believing that the many of the great wine regions of Europe will have totally lost their charm by 2050. If you noticed, it's "not gone completely," just losing their "charm." In other words, this region won't be able to hold its nose up to the rest of the world when it comes to wine making.

"Grapocalypse Now" is coming, and it will be within a period of time many of us could see in our lifetime. Places like Bordeaux, Tuscany, and the Rhone-Valley will become almost irrelevant when discussing the great wines of the world. This is, in part, because in roughly forty-ish years, the climate in this region will grow steadily warmer.  In turn, places like England, Baltic Germany, and much of Scandinavia will have the same climate of the Mediterranean areas and Southern France. Here is a breakdown of how the climate will effect the wine: 

  • Today's great red wines will get more alcoholic and sweeter
  • The great red wines will lost some acidity and minerality
  • Naturally ultra-sweet wines might keep their quality, but their production volume may decline
  • The great champagnes will be less affected, but shorter growing seasons may affect fruit flavors. 

So with this in mind, which wines should you be hoarding?
  • All red and white bordeaux
  • Napa Valley Cabs
  • Northern Rhone's Syrah
  • Northern Italian Reds
  • Reds from Central Spain
  • South Australia's Big Reds

So for all of you who really don't drink wine, this may not fully capture your interest.  Or maybe it may entice you to try and stock up and become a little more familiar with traditional wines before they're gone.

But for some other connoisseurs, this could be like the end of the world as you know it. Being so, maybe the age of current wine standards are coming to end and ushering in a new genre of wines which the likes the world has never seen before. Or not... I can't see into the future.

For me though, even while I do enjoy a glass of wine every once in a while, I'm no aficionado to know well enough what this really means for the wine world.  But maybe it'll help us all stop to appreciate the current classics while they last!

No comments:

Post a Comment