Friday, October 12, 2012

Last of the summer wine?

Most people know that English weather can be dreadful, right? Well, apparently 2012 - the entire year - will go down as one of the wettest and coolest years in history.  I know this first hand, as when I was home in April/May of this year the weather was abysmal.  And from regular emails from my brother, Thud.
So it didn't really surprise me when I was forwarded this article, which appeared in the Daily Mail about UK wine production, from Thud with an added personal note about his dairy-farming neighbour's predicament: "The news is full of farmers showing their rotten crops etc.  Donald's maize here is under water and he has no idea how he will feed his cows over the winter..."  When we have had such a great 2012 growing season in Northern California, it makes me sad to think of any English grapegrower struggling all summer long to tend to grapes whose ultimate destiny is to become compost.
I have had several different English wines, including a sparkling wine from Nyetimber, and I think English winemakers do an admirable, palatable job - especially when thwarted by unsavoury climatic goings-on that must be trying any year when compared to the mostly reliable conditions here in the Napa Valley.  Good luck next year folks.


New Hampshire Wineman said...

It is obvious that you have a big heart V-girl.
I've heard of bad vintages in Italy where a very good winery didn't even bottle their wine; somehow preparing for these events must come into the equation.

Vinogirl said...

NHW: Yes, I'm sure as a commercial winery you have to expect a disastrous vintage is at some point a possibility. But still heartbreaking none the less.