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News posted on Wednesday, 15 April 2015

Winemakers thankful for early harvest
Chief winemaker at Gibbston Valley Winery Christopher Keys said it meant they had most of the grapes picked when the snow arrived on Monday. "The good news is we're 70 percent through harvest at this point so the majority of our pinot has been taken in from the warmer sub-regions," he said. "It's still snowing, but that's only going to affect the later ripening areas that still have fruit hanging on to ripen, so cooler regions, Gibbston, Wanaka. Alexandra, are likely to have fruit still out there."

Moet winemaker Marc Brevot on why NZ has it good
It's not often that you hear someone from a 300-year old company say constant innovation is the key to success. But that's what Moet et Chandon winemaker Marc Brevot did this week during his first visit to New Zealand. "When you make wine, it's easy at some stage to be satisfied. Then you relax and continue to produce what you know. But if you start to do that then you're dead. You're dead because your environment is changing all the time, whether it's your consumer environment or your climate conditions, everything moves all the time.

US wine market sees growth in volume, but not value Rabobank says
The American wine market is slowing in terms of volume growth, despite continued expansion throughout 2014, according to Rabobank’s Wine Quarterly Q2 2015 report. But a report from the financial service agri-food team said US value growth is actually accelerating, making it a desirable market for premium brands. The report said the US wine market continued to expand in 2014 through growth volume which was “well below” rates seen in previous years.

What's the big deal about stems?
Why would anyone want to put grape stems in their wine? Richard Hemming investigates for Wine Searcher. Stems? As in the bits of a bunch of grapes you throw away? Yes! There is a growing trend for chucking the stems in the fermentation vat along with the grapes, rather than chucking them away. When making red wine, most grapes go through a machine called a crusher-destemmer, when they reach the winery.

Understanding sustainable wine standards
With so many organic options to eat, it may be easy to forget that wonderful wines can be just as sustainably produced as the food on our plates. Fortunately, Santa Barbara County boasts a growing number of wineries that have adopted one of many sustainably certified options. These varying criteria can cause confusion for wine enthusiasts, so here’s a review of three of the more common certification programs, along with insight from producers who are pursuing improved sustainability in winemaking for Earth Day and every day.

Artisan wine fair RAW announces new Berlin venue
The artisan wine fair, RAW is launching a new fair in Berlin later this year, to cater for an increasingly international clientele. RAW Berlin will be the show’s third location, following RAW London, which takes place on May 17-18 at the Truman Old Breweries, and RAW Vienna. The show promotes artisan wine producers who make fine wine using natural farming techniques, including organic and biodynamic practices.

Meet the misfits of the Australian wine industry
There’s no longer any debate about it: South Australian wines are among the best in the world. From regions like the Barossa Valley and McLaren Vale to the little natural winemakers’ utopia that is Basket Range), the variety and flavours of SA wine simply can’t be beat. That said – as great as it is – wine has always been somewhat of the mysterious older sibling of the alcohol world. Luckily, there are a heap of younger, energetic South Australian winemakers whose focus is on producing wines that are delicious, drinkable – and, above all else, accessible.

Why is the phrase ‘Life, drink it in’ too subversive for Aussies to handle?
In this opinion piece Mitchell Taylor argues the ban on the latest ad campaign from his winery is “political correctness and the nanny state gone too far”. ‘Life, Drink it in’. It seems a pretty good tagline for life, a nice message to get up and out and drink from life’s cup (responsibly of course). But I’m afraid this seemingly innocuous tagline, accompanying some beautiful imagery shot by one of the nation’s finest photographers, is simply too shocking, too provocative, too dangerous for your eyes.

2015 harvest brings chance for ‘memorable’ wine
PERFECT climatic conditions have resulted in one of the best ever grape harvests in the King Valley according to local growers and winemakers. Warm days, and mild and cool nights have produced some “amazing fruit” according to Christian Dal Zotto, vice-president of Wines of the King Valley. “It’s the best we’ve had for a while, the winemakers are very excited about the quality of the fruit and the potential to make some memorable wine,” he said.

Right all along about no looming gas crisis: anti-CSG group
A Hunter Valley anti coal seam gas (CSG) group says revelations New South Wales is not facing a looming gas crisis has proved its stand against the industry's claims were right all along. The Australian Energy Market Operator has revised its earlier prediction now stating there is no short, medium or long-term shortages expected for New South Wales. It comes just days after AGL secured Bass Strait gas supplies from Esso and BHP Billiton until 2020.

How To Drink Properly wins second international marketing award
DrinkWise and its agency Clemenger BBDO have claimed their second international accolade for the ‘How To Drink Properly’ social marketing program, claiming a silver award in the youth marketing category at the APAC Effie Awards 2015 in Singapore on Friday. After being awarded silver at the 2014 Spikes Asia Awards in September, ‘How To Drink Properly’ was recognised at the APAC Effie Awards as one of the region’s most outstanding marketing communication campaigns.


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