Global warming in the Vineyard according to Jancis Robinson
Read for you by Donatella Cinelli Colombini
The very well known Master of Wineand opinionist Jancis Robinson has found Busalacchi and his assistant Eric Hackert’s studies regarding the impact of the new climate in two dozen wine regions around the world.
The first piece of information is alarming: according to Busalacchi “extreme events, like heat waves, that stop photosynthesis and hail storms which destroy all of the grapes in a matter of minutes, will become more and more frequent “ . So global warming will decrease the potential of certain regions and will increase it in others, because it will modify alcohol, sugars, tannins and colour in every wine. For this reason many wineries in Champagne are buying land in Sussex and Kent which are more apt now for high quality viticulture.
Generally speaking the vineyards with higher latitudes or altitudes will be favoured by the climatic changes just like the vineyards surrounded by the ocean. So here is a list of the lucky ones “ Rhine in Germany, the states of Oregon and Washington in the United States, and the Mendoza Province in Argentina and New Zealand” .
But also in the more famous wine regions the geography of the best locations will change and will condition future choices <<what to plant, where to plant and how to manage their vineyards>> . In other words those facing North, the areas at the bottom of the valley that are humid and cool, could paradoxically recuperate
points, as it might be worthwhile trying further north grape varieties which are from the south. So from now on we must do exactly the opposite to what was done in the 20th century
However al lover wines << will lose their traditional character>> according to Professor Busalacchi they will be different. The research regarding the Bordeaux area for example reveals a shortening of the vine’s vegetative cycle, resulting in unbalanced wines with short of acidity and complexity.