Finally, spring had arrived with all its might and temperatures, but it seems that the good times are already over as it’s pouring down outside without much hope for improvement for the rest of the week. So, we’ll look back at the past week when the weather was fine and plenty of things happened in the world of wine with the JollyCellarMaster Weekly:
The latest from Bruxelles, more NFTs and other high-altitude news
Uproar in Italy
The reaction in Italy to the latest news from Bruxelles were nothing short of an uproar. What are we talking about? A communication from European lawmakers apparently discussed the possibility of adding water to wine to improve the health of European citizens in the action plan of the same name. Therein, Italian media proclaimed, the EU Council of Ministers addressed the practice of partial and total alcohol removal of wines is, because – you got it – alcohol is bad for you. The industry body Coldiretti is up in arms as the proposal seems to foresee the authorization of dealcoholizing or at least a partial removal of alcohol as permitted oenological practice, while – and here it comes – sticking with a designation of origin. The association sees this as potentially damaging to wine as a product and the reputation of Italian PDOs. Others see it as an opportunity to enter the market of alcohol-free wine that is prominent in Arabic countries, but I’m wondering whether this isn’t a conflict of the idea that by driving down yield per hectare through regulation as an expression of quality? Not that all these things have to make sense, but in good news for Coldiretti, Bruxelles seems already to be backtracking. More to come for sure.
Up, up and away
Global warming is shifting the wine map and soon nothing (or almost) might be as we know it, depending on who you listen to. What is certain though is that we will see changes in the regions that produce wine in general and where and what in particular. One way to counter the effects of climate change and warmer temperatures is the flight to higher altitudes.
One of the regions that appears to take advantage of this trend is Bolivia, a country that so far hasn’t played a major role on a global scale in terms of wine production.
However, growing wine is actually a centuries-old tradition that was started by Jesuit missionaries. At almost 2,000-meters above sea level, in the southern Tarija department in the foothills of the Andes mountain range, the Bolivian vineyards take on their mighty neighbours Argentina and Chile that rank seventh and eighth on the list of global wine producers. Only 5,000 hectares strong, the vineyards in Tarija benefit from a temperate climate with intense sunshine during the day and humidity at night. While most of the Bolivian wine production is concentrated between 21 and 23 degrees latitude at 1,600 to 2,000 meters altitude, some vineyards go as far up as 3,000 meters in particular hot areas, which already would make working the vineyards challenging for the average European. It sure is only a niche product at this size, but I’d be interested to learn how wine tastes from such heights, wouldn’t you?
More Wine Tokens
Remember last week’s story about cryptocurrencies and wine? Of course, you did if only because you’ve been listening to the latest podcast episode and if you haven’t, make sure you do, but if you are too lazy, here’s what’s happening: a French chateau is trying to sell its bottles in combination with a non-fungible token (NFT). These tokens are currently very popular to sell digital art but have a series of other applications, too. Now, another winery, is declaring NFTs as the future of wine and announced the launch of its own NFT. According to the press release, you can buy a 6-liter bottle of the winery’s Cabernet Sauvignon that comes „etched with a QR code that links back to the unique NFT. The NFT acts as a digital provenance for the physical product, establishing a first-of-its-kind authentication process to track a bottle’s ownership and prevent fraud“. A great idea, but I’m curious to see how it works exactly. Stay tuned!
That’s all for this week. If you have an interesting story, connect on Twitter and if you want to stay in the loop about things happening at the JollyCellarMaster and the world of wine, make sure you sign up to our newsletter.
Disclaimer: Remember what I said last week about investment advice with regard to crypto currencies or any other kind of investment? Well, in a nutshell, nothing in here should be seen as investment advice. Plus – as always – I’d like to be completely transparent about affiliations, conflicts of interest, my expressed views and liability: Like anywhere else on this website, the views and opinions expressed are solely those of the original authors and other contributors. The material information contained on this website is for general information purposes only. I endeavor to keep this information correct and up-to-date, I do not accept any liability for any falls in accurate or incomplete information or damages arising from technical issues as well as damages arising from clicking on or relying on third-party links. I am not responsible for outside links and information is contained in this article nor does it contain any referrals or affiliations with any of the producers or companies mentioned. As I said, the opinions my own, no liability, just thought it would be important to make this clear. Thanks!