When you look back on 2020, you may not be able to fight the need to drink wine directly from the decanter. Nobody's judging you.
There's Never Ever Enough Wine
Year of Wine Review (2020 )
You can not hurry through a vintage, even if often you want to strike the "skip" button and never look back. But, it would be a shame not to reflect on those highs, lows, and hilarious moments that made 2020 such a pivotal year in wine.
Governments are getting their oily paws around wine sales.
Getting a terrific bottle of wine just got a lot harder thanks to international trade policies.
- US degrees second toll against European alcohol, causing United States imports of French wine to drop by fifty percent.
- Europe responds to US tolls by shifting wine exports to China.
- China kicks Australian wine trade in the gut with 212% tariff. Consume some Australian wine today!
- The South African government locks down wine exports, cutting a $600M annually market in half. Time to stock up on South African Cabernet!
Wine sales are up! However, it's not precisely what you think.
Complete sales volume for wine throughout 2020 is up significantly. Sales came to virtually 30% more during March- May compared to 2019. What are people buying?
- Wine sales got dominated by Sparkling wines and wine-based cocktails.
- Large brands pushed tons of wines this year, while little wineries based on in-person sales suffered.
- People felt the need to stock up and we saw a large increase on box wine sales.
Independent wineries had to get creative selling wine this year.
With dining establishments closed throughout COVID wineries needed to be creative. There was a massive uptick in virtual tastings, live streams, and internet sales in wine this year.
Climate modification is in full effect.
Back in 2015 we reported on a climate change study pointing to several wine regions becoming “unsuitable” by year 2050. This year we got to really experience what that actually feels like.
- Germany experienced its nine warm winter, which resulted in almost all of the Ice wine makers missing out on the target.
- California and Oregon get struck hard by wildfires in late summer, ruining lots of wineries, houses, and in some locations, the entire grape harvest ...
- A proactive British company invents a paper wine bottle using recycled material. It saves on waste, stores as easily as glass, and insulates better! Drinking from a paper bag has finally achieved the elegance it deserves.
- For vineyards, there is now an all-electric tractor that can run without a driver.
- A massive excess of wine results in a mystical boon in unexpected wine spills and celebrity wines.
We've been swimming in a sea of wine since late. It looks like each week there's a new celebrity coming out with a rosé (Post Malone and Kylie Minogue), a "pure" wine (Cameron Diaz), or a bottle of badassery (Snoop Dog and Mary J Blige).
What’s weird is all the mysterious reports of wine spills and new wine-based distillates.
- A Mission Hill worker inadvertently pumped greater than 20,000 bottles worth of wine down a drain ... and this had not been the very first time.
- A creek in Sonoma Area, California ran red after a mixing storage tank failure caused 490,000 bottles of Cabernet washing into Russian River.
- French winemakers fight the surplus by transforming unsold wine into hand-sanitizer, which we strongly recommend you not to drink.
- A winery Muscadine in North Carolina proactively gave away 74,000 bottles worth of wine to distill right into hand sanitizer. Did they do that out of love, or was it really just that bad?
- A strange malfunction at a winery in Italy caused Lambrusco to flow from people's taps. Why consume water when you can drink wine!
All in all, everyone has had a serious thirst for wine. And, it got to our heads…
- A mostly naked California man is found drinking wine straight from a moving tanker truck.
- Cracker Barrel makes a move to add wine and beer to their menu. We recommend trting a great Lambrusco Grassparossa with the Poultry n' Dumplins.
- Taco Bell made wine. No joke. Try the Jalapeño Noir with their Toasted Cheesy Chalupa.
Raise a glass to 2020 ... and wave it goodbye. Let's do a much better job in 2021 shall we?
It's been an intriguing year, a difficult year, and a year of adjustment. Enjoy in a great bottle of wine and see it out the door in style.