New Sweetness Scale for Alsace wine labels

A standardized sweetness guide will be required on all Alsace wine labels starting with wines produced from the 2021 harvest.

While most French wines are labeled by origin, wines from Alsace are indicated by grape variety and location information, including if the wine is from one of the 51 grand crus. Now wine buyers and trade can also consult the bottle for a visual sweetness scale or one of the following appropriate terms.

The New Alsace Wine Sweetness Scale

The new sweetness scale is straightforward.  The scale is in both English and French. Dry (sec) sugar content of the wine does not exceed 4 g/l

  1. Medium-Dry/demi-sec: sugar content of the wine is between 4 g/l and 12 g/l
  2. Mellow/moelleux: sugar content of the wine is between 12 g/l and 45 g/l
  3. Sweet/doux: sugar content of the wine exceeds 45 g/l

This change was prompted by the Alsace wine industry and centers on sweetness guidelines already in place in the European Union.

“In Alsace, we produce many different styles of wine, from dry wines to sweet wines to sparkling wines,” says Foulques Aulagnon, export marketing manager, for CIVA (Conseil Interprofessionnel des Vins d’Alsace) which is also known as the Alsace Wine Board. “This new standardized sweetness guide doesn’t affect how we produce our wines, but gives greater clarity on the style of what’s in the bottle.” Crémant d’Alsace, traditional method sparkling wine from the appellation, already has sweetness guide regulations and isn’t impacted by this new round of rules.

In addition to labels, the new system applies to advertising, marketing materials, invoices, and other containers. This is designed to be helpful to trade partners such as educators, retailers, and sommeliers.

According to CIVA data, export sales of Alsace wines grew by 22.4% in 2021. With more buyers outside of France, this move provides further understanding to new customers that may not be as familiar with what Alsace has to offer.

* According to EU regulations, “Dry” represents sugar content does not exceed 4 g/l (or 9 g/l if the total acidity in grams of tartaric acid per liter is not more than 2 g/l lower than the residual sugar content). “Medium-Dry” represents sugar content of the wine is above 4 g/l but does not exceed 12 g/l (or 18 g/l if the total acidity in grams of tartaric acid per liter is not more than 10 g/l lower than the residual sugar content).

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South Africa’s Wine Exports Bounce Back After Two Years

The South African wine industry is making a comeback after facing serious challenges the past two years.

There was a distinct silver lining when wine exports recovered to a healthy“volume of 388 million litres, which amounted to R10.2-billion” according to a statement by Wines of South Africa.

There was a strong demand from UK, US and China, these three countries helped South African wine exports increase by 12.1% in value to R10.2bn in 2021.

Top Export Markets

The UK remains South Africa’s largest export market. Volume sales to UK increased 12% to 92.5 million litres; value sales up 20% to R2.5bn.

Germany was the second largest export market, with volumes at compared to the previous year.

Shipments to the US increased 134% by volume and 39% by value to reach R887m.

The Netherlands was the fourth largest export market (by value), followed by other African countries, with exports increasing 50%. Canada and France were also very strong.

The fastest growth came from China, with exports increasing 189% by volume and 59% by value to R458 million. China is now South Africa’s eighth largest export market.

The South African alcoholic drinks industry suffered a very challenging few years as the government imposed a series of domestic sales bans and export bans during the pandemic.

“It is good for our recovery efforts, as the alcohol industry has suffered almost five alcohol bans which amount to about 26 weeks of non-trading,” said National Liquor Traders Council spokesperson Lucky Ntimane. “So the announcement is a welcome relief, but people need to understand that this is also not a licence for non-compliance. It does not mean that Covid-19 is gone or disappeared.”

The popular trade show Cape Wine is set to take place in October, which could give the industry an added boost. It was initially scheduled for September 2021, but it had to be postponed due to a coronavirus outbreak.

#southafricawine #wosa #southafrica #winewinewine #winelover #winelovers #instawine #instagramwine #winetime #wineculture #cheers #wineinsta #wineinstagram #winenews #wineeconomics #winetravel #wine #redwine #whitewine #rosewine

France Adds A New Appellation – Côtes du Rhône Villages Laudun

The village of Laudun in the Côtes du Rhône is set to become its own AOP likely by its 2023 vintage, following decades of lobbying.

News emerged last week after officials from France’s national appellations body, the INAO, presented their findings on the move back in December and following a vote by local winemakers.

The next step will be a public inquiry by the INAO in the three communes that make up the Laudun production area in order to establish the official area of production (which will cover over 1000 hectares (2500 acres). The appellation is expected to be formally inaugurated in June this year although the title will likely not be seen on labels until 2023.

“It will be the conclusion of a great undertaking,” Luc Pélaquié, head of the Laudun winegrowers’ union, told regional newspaper Midi Libre. “I salute the hard work and spirit of the winegrowers who have labored for the future of local viticulture.”

The Côtes du Rhône Villages Laudun title encompasses the communes of Laudun, Saint-Victor-la-Coste et Tresques in the Gard department on the right bank (west) of the Rhône, north of Lirac and Tavel, and over the river from (and to northwest of) Châteauneuf-du-Pape. Vineyards in Laudun currently cover around 560 hectares (1400 acres).

The region is known for being one of the largest producers of white wines of the Villages. Laudun whites, predominantly from Grenache Blanc and Clairette (although Viognier, Bourboulenc, Marsanne and Roussanne may also figure) make up around a quarter of all production in the area.

Reds are predominantly blended from Grenache and Syrah, with the former being just proportionally larger in terms of overall vineyard plantings. Mourvèdre, Carignan and Cinsault can also figure in minor proportions.

In total, the region produces just under two million liters of wine a year through 18 wine estates, six cooperative wineries and 18 négoce operations. Over half of all Laudun production is sold in retail outlets in France while a quarter of production is exported to UK, China/Hong Kong, US, Belgium and Sweden.

#winelover #instawine #wine #frenchwine #madeinfrance #cotesdurhone #villageslundun #laudunwineregion #vin #winenews #vinslaudun @vinslaudun #winetime #redwine #whitewine

The Château d’Yquem 2019 Vintage

Château d’Yquem has unveiled the 2019 vintage of its iconic Sauternes wine. The announcement of the new vintage follows the postponement of its release last fall, which the brand followed with a new Lighthouse initiative.

When aged, Château d’Yquem’s famed wines are best drunk after 10 years, with seemingly no upper limit on the liquid’s ability to develop intensity and complexity. However, the estate is now also putting added emphasis on drinking the wine young, with its Lighthouse initiative encouraging consumers to try the wines when they’re newly released to market.

Lighthouse Program
The Lighthouse program focuses on larger formats, such as jeroboams, to enable consumers to taste the new 2019 vintage by the glass, with key partnerships globally including Annabel’s, Portland Restaurant, Berry Bros. & Rudd (London), and various boutique wine bars in Paris.

Tasting Notes
The Château d’Yquem 2019 vintage is a fragrant and vibrant release with a surprisingly high (45%) proportion of Sauvignon Blanc. “Sauvignon Blanc brings more acidity and freshness, so is helpful for balancing the opulence of the Sémillon,” says Yquem cellar master Sandrine Garbay.

2019 Growing Season
This was a challenging year, warm conditions alongside plenty of rain led to serious mildew pressure. There was good weather from flowering through most of the summer, before heavy rain in late September created the perfect conditions for a “massive infection” of noble rot. The harvest window was brief, with 120 pickers working intensively between October 7 and 14.

The 2019 vintage will be released March 22nd, 2022.

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Madame Pommery to be honoured for International Women’s Day [March 8, 2022]

Champagne Pommery will be celebrating and recognizing the achievements of Madame Pommery for International Women’s Day on March 8, 2022.

Madame Pommery, one of the great widows who marked the history of Champagne in the 1800’s, played an essential role in the development of modern Champagne as we know it.

This year, focusing on gender bias, stereotypes and discrimination – challenges women have been fighting for many years, the house will recognize Madame Pommery as a woman who had great confidence in her decision making and used her success to help others – especially other women and workers.

Madame Louise Pommery took over her husband’s Champagne business in 1858 when she was widowed and left with an infant child. Madame Pomery wasn’t just a businesswoman but also an innovator – she came up with the invention of “brut” Champagne. At that time dosage was added to champagne which was varied and unregulated resulting in sweet wines; she wanted something more elegant and fresh. Madame Pomery also popularized the use of caves for aging Champagne and is credited with pioneering wine tourism.

It is interesting to note that Madame Pommery was the first woman in France to receive a state funeral, and was a key figure who valued difference and inclusivity.

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