California’s Drought may Result in Tastier Wine

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( — April 5, 2015)  — California is struggling with water resources for the  forth year in a row during an historically bad drought. This week, California Gov. Jerry Brown signed an executive order requiring cities and towns to cut 25 percent of their water use over the next nine months.

Meanwhile, the winemakers have actually been producing tastier wine. With a drought that’s affected more than 98 percent of the state, the prediction was that the California wine industry may be reaching the end of the vine.

Robert Nadeau, who produces “huge” Zinfandel wines near Paso Robles, California, said he sensed trouble when reddish silt started coming out of his faucets last year. Then, in August, nothing came out, Bloomberg reported.

“There’s a lot of aggravation, frustration and fear in the area with neighbors pointing fingers over water use,” Nadeau, told Bloomberg. “This is a function of survival. One or two inches a year, the fourth year in a row. Our vines are struggling horribly,” he added.

The vineyards in deed find themselves in a difficult situation; however, grapes have proven to be extremely resistant to droughts. With fewer water supplies, the grapevines begin producing the smaller grapes, but that means more flavor heavily concentrated in each one.

According to the Wall Street Journal, vineyard owner Stephanie Honig said last year that the dry climate means vines will look deeper into the soil for water, that process adds different flavors to the fruit, and that is precisely what had happened.

Smaller but tastier grapes, however, aren’t such a good news for vineyards that produce cheaper wine. Smaller grapes means fewer bottles on the market, which raises their costs.

“The scarcity of water will likely push up prices for wines, especially some of the cheaper ones,” Rowan Gormley, founder of the online retailer NakedWine, said to Fortune earlier this year.

Unfortunately, there is no time for creating different marketing campaigns because grapevines may be able to withstand droughts for a certain period, but they cannot carry on forever – and they may reach their limit soon, RT reported.

The plants can reach up to 100 feet below the ground to get water, however, the quality of the deeper water may vary.   Often deeper water is higher in salinity which might damage the vines.