April Frost in Burgundy

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John J
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April Frost in Burgundy

#1 Post by John J » April 14th, 2019, 10:54 am

Interesting video of early morning straw fires to fight the frost in Chambolle (Antoine Amiot-Servelle’s IG). Third year in a row they have had to deal with mid-April frost.

Last edited by John J on April 14th, 2019, 12:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: April Frost in Burgundy

#2 Post by YLee » April 14th, 2019, 11:36 am

But at the end this vintage be the best vintage in decades. neener
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Re: April Frost in Burgundy

#3 Post by William Kelley » April 14th, 2019, 11:50 am

Tonight is supposed to be colder than last night. Sun is setting right now. Everyone cross their fingers. Beaune has smelt faintly of burning straw all day.
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Re: April Frost in Burgundy

#4 Post by Tim Heaton » April 14th, 2019, 12:03 pm

I'm in Sondrio/Valtellina tonight, supposed to get to 1C or so; I think they'll dodge a bullet as things will likely warm from tonight forward.
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Re: April Frost in Burgundy

#5 Post by Josh Grossman » April 14th, 2019, 4:41 pm

Hopefully Champagne hasn't had any bud break yet either. Last night:

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Re: April Frost in Burgundy

#6 Post by Mark Y » April 14th, 2019, 4:49 pm

Isn't winter here or something tonight? ;)
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Re: April Frost in Burgundy

#7 Post by Howard Cooper » April 14th, 2019, 5:08 pm

hope that they come out better than in 2016.
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Re: April Frost in Burgundy

#8 Post by Howard Cooper » April 14th, 2019, 5:16 pm

YLee wrote:
April 14th, 2019, 11:36 am
But at the end this vintage be the best vintage in decades. neener
Not exactly sure why you consider this topic to be such a major source of humor - we are discussing the possibility of a major frost that could cost producers millions or billions of dollars and would cause prices to rise to consumer by a lot.

You certainly have a weird sense of humor.
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Re: April Frost in Burgundy

#9 Post by YLee » April 14th, 2019, 5:33 pm

Howard Cooper wrote:
April 14th, 2019, 5:16 pm
YLee wrote:
April 14th, 2019, 11:36 am
But at the end this vintage be the best vintage in decades. neener
Not exactly sure why you consider this topic to be such a major source of humor - we are discussing the possibility of a major frost that could cost producers millions or billions of dollars and would cause prices to rise to consumer by a lot.

You certainly have a weird sense of humor.
Chill out.
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Re: April Frost in Burgundy

#10 Post by Thomas De Waen » April 14th, 2019, 11:09 pm

I was in the Loire valley a few days ago, visiting producers in the savennieres and Anjou area (some world class wines being produced there those days). They’ve lost 100pc of the potential 2019 harvest to frost. And that’s after losing a bunch of the 2017 harvest to frost. That’s incredibly tough for the local producers.

Their firm view is that, due to global warming, this is the new normal.

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Re: April Frost in Burgundy

#11 Post by James Billy » April 15th, 2019, 12:39 am

Thomas De Waen wrote:
April 14th, 2019, 11:09 pm
I was in the Loire valley a few days ago, visiting producers in the savennieres and Anjou area (some world class wines being produced there those days). They’ve lost 100pc of the potential 2019 harvest to frost. And that’s after losing a bunch of the 2017 harvest to frost. That’s incredibly tough for the local producers.

Their firm view is that, due to CLIMATE CHANGE, this is the new normal.
FIFY.

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Re: April Frost in Burgundy

#12 Post by Thomas De Waen » April 15th, 2019, 1:24 am

James Billy wrote:
April 15th, 2019, 12:39 am
Thomas De Waen wrote:
April 14th, 2019, 11:09 pm
I was in the Loire valley a few days ago, visiting producers in the savennieres and Anjou area (some world class wines being produced there those days). They’ve lost 100pc of the potential 2019 harvest to frost. And that’s after losing a bunch of the 2017 harvest to frost. That’s incredibly tough for the local producers.

Their firm view is that, due to CLIMATE CHANGE, this is the new normal.
FIFY.
Warmer climate = earlier bud break = more frost risk.

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Re: April Frost in Burgundy

#13 Post by billnanson » April 15th, 2019, 2:18 am

Thomas De Waen wrote:
April 15th, 2019, 1:24 am
Warmer climate = earlier bud break = more frost risk.
Indeed - whatever stage we are in, in any meteorological cycle - we are currently about 10 days ahead of the current average year, and this average has also been skewing earlier over the last few years.
John J wrote:
April 14th, 2019, 10:54 am
Interesting video of early morning straw fires to fight the frost in Chambolle (Antoine Amiot-Servelle’s IG). Third year in a row they have had to deal with mid-April frost.
It was the end of April in 2016 and 2017 (25-26 April) so more potential for damage - indeed actually in Chambolle in 2016 when they lost 80% - the frost didn't do any damage there in 2017. You should look out for Vincent Dancer's aerial image from this weekend of the candles burning in Chassagne-Puligny, initially on Instagram, and then copied a thousand times on Twitter...
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Re: April Frost in Burgundy

#14 Post by Karl K » April 15th, 2019, 3:35 am

Thomas De Waen wrote:
April 14th, 2019, 11:09 pm
I was in the Loire valley a few days ago, visiting producers in the savennieres and Anjou area (some world class wines being produced there those days). They’ve lost 100pc of the potential 2019 harvest to frost. And that’s after losing a bunch of the 2017 harvest to frost. That’s incredibly tough for the local producers.

Their firm view is that, due to global warming, this is the new normal.
Thomas, thanks for the news.
Care to say which producers?

In Savennieres, was it those at a lower elevation?

Did Roche aux Moines come through?
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Re: April Frost in Burgundy

#15 Post by Thomas De Waen » April 15th, 2019, 5:59 am

Karl K wrote:
April 15th, 2019, 3:35 am
Thomas De Waen wrote:
April 14th, 2019, 11:09 pm
I was in the Loire valley a few days ago, visiting producers in the savennieres and Anjou area (some world class wines being produced there those days). They’ve lost 100pc of the potential 2019 harvest to frost. And that’s after losing a bunch of the 2017 harvest to frost. That’s incredibly tough for the local producers.

Their firm view is that, due to global warming, this is the new normal.
Thomas, thanks for the news.
Care to say which producers?

In Savennieres, was it those at a lower elevation?

Did Roche aux Moines come through?
Talked to quite a few folks and most lost all the harvest (both at low and higher altitudes): Richard Leroy, Thibaud Boudignon (both on his Anjou and Savennieres vineyards), Dominique Dufour/Aussigouins, Jo Pithon,... Apparently a 1000 ha of vines are similarly impacted. Much worse than 2017.

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Re: April Frost in Burgundy

#16 Post by D@vid Bu3ker » April 15th, 2019, 6:03 am

YLee wrote:
April 14th, 2019, 5:33 pm
Chill out.
That's actually the problem.
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Re: April Frost in Burgundy

#17 Post by Casey Hartlip » April 15th, 2019, 6:11 am

That's so hard to see. Watch for pics the next few days as it usually takes a short while for the damage to show. Terrible.
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Re: April Frost in Burgundy

#18 Post by YLee » April 15th, 2019, 7:03 am

D@vid Bu3ker wrote:
April 15th, 2019, 6:03 am
YLee wrote:
April 14th, 2019, 5:33 pm
Chill out.
That's actually the problem.
blahblah
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Re: April Frost in Burgundy

#19 Post by Art R » April 15th, 2019, 7:53 am

Really, Mr. Lee. Are you enjoying this?
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Re: April Frost in Burgundy

#20 Post by YLee » April 15th, 2019, 8:26 am

Art R wrote:
April 15th, 2019, 7:53 am
Really, Mr. Lee. Are you enjoying this?
Are you? Some of you guys act like they dont deal with different natural events ever in their history of making wines. As if I'm wishing them pain and suffering. If you dont like my joke, block me or move on. Just as I'm doing with you.
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Re: April Frost in Burgundy

#21 Post by Scott G r u n e r » April 15th, 2019, 8:33 am

D@vid Bu3ker wrote:
April 15th, 2019, 6:03 am
YLee wrote:
April 14th, 2019, 5:33 pm
Chill out.
That's actually the problem.
Just wanted to let you know, I got the joke. I see others did not.
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Re: April Frost in Burgundy

#22 Post by Todd F r e n c h » April 15th, 2019, 8:34 am

Time for a few folks to grow up a bit. The immature name-calling does nothing to benefit the thread. Take it to PM if you want to sling names at one another, ok?
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Re: April Frost in Burgundy

#23 Post by D@vid Bu3ker » April 15th, 2019, 8:50 am

Scott G r u n e r wrote:
April 15th, 2019, 8:33 am
D@vid Bu3ker wrote:
April 15th, 2019, 6:03 am
YLee wrote:
April 14th, 2019, 5:33 pm
Chill out.
That's actually the problem.
Just wanted to let you know, I got the joke. I see others did not.
I have found that sarcasm and a little levity are inevitably taken as brutal insults.

It won't stop me. People treating a wine board like it's some life or death intellectual struggle actually makes things more funny IMO.
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Re: April Frost in Burgundy

#24 Post by Alan Eden » April 15th, 2019, 9:09 am

John J wrote:
April 14th, 2019, 10:54 am
Interesting video of early morning straw fires to fight the frost in Chambolle (Antoine Amiot-Servelle’s IG). Third year in a row they have had to deal with mid-April frost.

UH OH !!

2019 smoke damages Burgundy wines
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Re: April Frost in Burgundy

#25 Post by A Rubin Stein » April 15th, 2019, 9:33 am

I was in the Aube and Chablis not even two weeks ago and frost was definitely a concern. Christian Moreau was putting blankets on some of his Grand Cru vineyards. At Vouette & Sorbée, they were preparing candles, as they were in Chablis. I took the opportunity to ask the vignerons about insurance for frost. Most have it now, but it wasn’t available in 2016, when April frosts in some cases (e.g., Château de Béru) caused a 100% loss of their grapes for this vintage. Think about that from the perspective of mom-and-pop grape farmers whose main if not sole source of livelihood is their grape crop. The vignerons mentioned that insurance does not come close to covering their losses from frost. For one thing, insurance is expensive. Also, I'm not 100% certain, but insurance may provide some compensation as to the value of the grapes, but this does not include lost profits. It's really quite tragic and those of us who love these wines should appreciate just how fickle nature can be and how vulnerable the wine producers are to catastrophe.
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Re: April Frost in Burgundy

#26 Post by Alan Rath » April 15th, 2019, 9:54 am

Very sad. I can't understand anyone even thinking about making a joke on the subject, but whatever.
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Re: April Frost in Burgundy

#27 Post by ATaylor » April 15th, 2019, 10:48 am

Thomas De Waen wrote:
April 15th, 2019, 1:24 am
James Billy wrote:
April 15th, 2019, 12:39 am
Thomas De Waen wrote:
April 14th, 2019, 11:09 pm
I was in the Loire valley a few days ago, visiting producers in the savennieres and Anjou area (some world class wines being produced there those days). They’ve lost 100pc of the potential 2019 harvest to frost. And that’s after losing a bunch of the 2017 harvest to frost. That’s incredibly tough for the local producers.

Their firm view is that, due to CLIMATE CHANGE, this is the new normal.
FIFY.
Warmer climate = earlier bud break = more frost risk.
This. February was exceptionally warm throughout Europe and everything was way in advance when we were in Italy in mid March. Vignerons in both Italy and CH were extremely nervous. We sat on a lakeside terrace in t-shirts on a Sunday in the Lavaux (CH) and 8 days later they received 6-8 inches of snow.
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Re: April Frost in Burgundy

#28 Post by KyleC » April 15th, 2019, 10:59 am

Wine growers everywhere need to accept that global warming is happening. Frost sucks, but we have modern technology, e.g. wind machines, to deal with it. I know Burgundy is all about tradition, but viticulturists need to start using the tools available to them, vs. contributing to more global warming by burning smudge pots, hay, and everything else.
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Re: April Frost in Burgundy

#29 Post by Thomas De Waen » April 15th, 2019, 1:49 pm

KyleC wrote:
April 15th, 2019, 10:59 am
Wine growers everywhere need to accept that global warming is happening. Frost sucks, but we have modern technology, e.g. wind machines, to deal with it. I know Burgundy is all about tradition, but viticulturists need to start using the tools available to them, vs. contributing to more global warming by burning smudge pots, hay, and everything else.
I think that burg producers now have the means to prevent most frost-related damages. It’s much harder for producers in less popular areas who simply can’t afford the wind machines.

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Re: April Frost in Burgundy

#30 Post by C. Mc Cart » April 15th, 2019, 2:14 pm

Some remarkable images (drones at dusk, I assume) over the past few days on Instagram. Like the vineyards are on fire. Some plots (more than would be left fallow) apparently left to their own luck - less than worried owners I suppose.

I'd link them if I recalled who posted them.
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Re: April Frost in Burgundy

#31 Post by Steen T Olsen » April 15th, 2019, 2:24 pm

In Bordeaux, trouble this Friday/Saturday night as well. Chateau Anthonic in Moulis reported frost; no word on how much damage they received. I certainly hope the damage is minimal compared to 2017 when close to 100% was lost. They got some help from nearby Chateau Clarke (Listrac) in a fine showing of solidarity between the wine growers.
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Re: April Frost in Burgundy

#32 Post by Frank Drew » April 15th, 2019, 2:44 pm

For any of us non-farmers, imagine that whatever work you do you only get paid once a year, but that some years when that time rolls around, you don’t. Ag’s a bitch.

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Re: April Frost in Burgundy

#33 Post by Casey Hartlip » April 15th, 2019, 3:12 pm

John J wrote:
April 14th, 2019, 10:54 am
Interesting video of early morning straw fires to fight the frost in Chambolle (Antoine Amiot-Servelle’s IG). Third year in a row they have had to deal with mid-April frost.

Funny how air quality govt folks worry that my three 15 year old diesel engines might be putting out unhealthy emissions when I'm protecting 110 acres of grapes.
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Re: April Frost in Burgundy

#34 Post by Brad Baker » April 15th, 2019, 3:25 pm

Josh Grossman wrote:
April 14th, 2019, 4:41 pm
Hopefully Champagne hasn't had any bud break yet either. Last night:
Champagne started budbreak in some areas in late March this year so things are worrisome. The recent weather has been a nail biter, but a victory in most areas for the vignerons as some vines were lost, but not out of the ordinary or worrisome so far except for the Cote des Bars which has been hit harder. In the big picture, the problem is that frost can still come for another four weeks. As budbreaks come earlier and earlier, the potential for problems rises.
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Re: April Frost in Burgundy

#35 Post by Casey Hartlip » April 15th, 2019, 4:42 pm

Josh Grossman wrote:
April 14th, 2019, 4:41 pm
Hopefully Champagne hasn't had any bud break yet either. Last night:
This picture although shocking is what happens when overhead sprinklers are used for frost protection. You can see the sprinkler streams above the trellis in this pic. The ice coats the vines and keeps them slightly above freezing while the ice forms. The key is to keep the water going until all ice is melted. FWIW it takes 55 gallons per acre per MINUTE to protect. For a 100 acre vineyard that's 5500 gallons/minute. You need a heckofalot of water storage to frost protect.
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Re: April Frost in Burgundy

#36 Post by Alan Eden » April 15th, 2019, 8:18 pm

Alan Rath wrote:
April 15th, 2019, 9:54 am
Very sad. I can't understand anyone even thinking about making a joke on the subject, but whatever.
Alan

Its millionaire's vineyards. Nobody is getting hurt or losing their homes.

I grew up in a farming community, farmers are always poor and downtrodden, yet they somehow all drive Range rovers and the kids goto private schools

So while i do not wish them any harm, please dont make out like its a natural disaster
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Re: April Frost in Burgundy

#37 Post by James Billy » April 15th, 2019, 9:12 pm

Well said, Alan.

Also, many of the winemakers only have their job because of family connections. It's all very incestuous.

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Re: April Frost in Burgundy

#38 Post by Jason T » April 16th, 2019, 2:00 am

Not all of them are millionaires. And being a 'millionaire' doesn't necessarily mean they are 'wealthy'. They could have all of their wealth tied up in the land and business, and be cash-poor, which would be a huge bind on a winery. And not all of them got their jobs through family connections.

What if your home burned, and your neighbors said 'oh, he'll be fine, he's the rich guy with all the wine'?

Regardless, whether they are 'rich' or got their jobs through connections, it doesn't seem necessary to joke about their plight.
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Re: April Frost in Burgundy

#39 Post by D@vid Bu3ker » April 16th, 2019, 4:56 am

The level of ignorance combined with callous disregard for a significant loss at some wineries is distressing, but unfortunately not shocking.
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Re: April Frost in Burgundy

#40 Post by Howard Cooper » April 16th, 2019, 5:05 am

Alan Eden wrote:
April 15th, 2019, 8:18 pm


So while i do not wish them any harm, please dont make out like its a natural disaster
Frost destroying crops whether in Burgundy or anywhere else in the world is a natural disaster just like a forest fire, a blizzard, or a flood. I don't understand this comment at all. Explain to me how this is different than the fires that hit California in many years? Somehow I don't remember these heartless jokes and comments the last time fire hurt California vineyards and wineries.
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Re: April Frost in Burgundy

#41 Post by Alan Eden » April 16th, 2019, 9:32 am

California fires caused a lot of distress at a human level, people losing homes etc. That's how its different.

Im sorry i find humour in almost every situation but im not going to feel bad about some grapes getting frost bite, nobody died or had homes destroyed. OK maybe some Burgundians dont have millions of dollars worth of wine to sell but blow me if im going to treat that as a human tragedy
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Re: April Frost in Burgundy

#42 Post by Alan Rath » April 16th, 2019, 11:16 am

Alan, I often feel people around here give you grief you don't deserve. In this case, you deserve every ounce of it, you're being a total ass. And I'm sorry we have the same name to confuse people in a thread like this.
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Re: April Frost in Burgundy

#43 Post by Alan Eden » April 16th, 2019, 12:01 pm

Alan

Nobody will ever confuse me with liking Burgundy.

I dont wish Burgundy any ill will, just not crying for them

Alan
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Re: April Frost in Burgundy

#44 Post by Jim Anderson » April 16th, 2019, 12:40 pm

Alan Eden wrote:
April 16th, 2019, 9:32 am
California fires caused a lot of distress at a human level, people losing homes etc. That's how its different.

Im sorry i find humour in almost every situation but im not going to feel bad about some grapes getting frost bite, nobody died or had homes destroyed. OK maybe some Burgundians dont have millions of dollars worth of wine to sell but blow me if im going to treat that as a human tragedy
Seems that if you are lacking an empathy gene you should make up for it with some good taste, class, dignity or the very least discretion and simply say nothing. Whether or not this rises to a level that you find worthy of your ability to show some basic human kindness you should at least be man enough to understand that people have lost and it’s best to simply shut your yap if what is going to come out is bile and bluster.
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Re: April Frost in Burgundy

#45 Post by Scott Brunson » April 16th, 2019, 3:12 pm

Alan Eden wrote:
April 15th, 2019, 8:18 pm
Alan Rath wrote:
April 15th, 2019, 9:54 am
Very sad. I can't understand anyone even thinking about making a joke on the subject, but whatever.
Alan

Its millionaire's vineyards. Nobody is getting hurt or losing their homes.

I grew up in a farming community, farmers are always poor and downtrodden, yet they somehow all drive Range rovers and the kids goto private schools

So while i do not wish them any harm, please dont make out like its a natural disaster
Sorry Alan--that is totally ignorant. Many domaines in Burgundy are simple farmers, not millionaires.
And Mr. Lee, your attempt at levity was poorly timed and fell far short of the target.
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Re: April Frost in Burgundy

#46 Post by R. Frankel » April 16th, 2019, 3:50 pm

I wish people would just stay on the topic at hand - what's going on with frost and other issues in Burgundy this year. For those of us who care about the region, its people, its products, and its health as a community this is information we'd love to get, and is hard to find any other way than through the Internet.

(Liberal use of the ignore feature is helping me here, as it does in many threads, but sadly that feature doesn't extend to postings copied in replies. Add that as a feature please!)
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Re: April Frost in Burgundy

#47 Post by Tom G l a s g o w » April 16th, 2019, 5:35 pm

Alan Eden wrote:
April 16th, 2019, 12:01 pm
Alan

Nobody will ever confuse me with liking Burgundy.

I dont wish Burgundy any ill will, just not crying for them

Alan
Then why post in this thread?

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Re: April Frost in Burgundy

#48 Post by Dan Kravitz » April 16th, 2019, 5:40 pm

Jim Anderson wrote:
April 16th, 2019, 12:40 pm
Alan Eden wrote:
April 16th, 2019, 9:32 am
California fires caused a lot of distress at a human level, people losing homes etc. That's how its different.

Im sorry i find humour in almost every situation but im not going to feel bad about some grapes getting frost bite, nobody died or had homes destroyed. OK maybe some Burgundians dont have millions of dollars worth of wine to sell but blow me if im going to treat that as a human tragedy
Seems that if you are lacking an empathy gene you should make up for it with some good taste, class, dignity or the very least discretion and simply say nothing. Whether or not this rises to a level that you find worthy of your ability to show some basic human kindness you should at least be man enough to understand that people have lost and it’s best to simply shut your yap if what is going to come out is bile and bluster.
+1 big time.
I know growers in Burgundy who drive Mercedes and growers who drive Clios. If either of them lose their harvest to frost, it hurts, economically and emotionally. If you own a vineyard (I do), you are invested in every sense, even if you live 5000 miles away (I do).

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Re: April Frost in Burgundy

#49 Post by James Billy » April 16th, 2019, 11:19 pm

I think I'd better make it clear that I do agree with Alan when it comes to top producers with huge amounts of top Cote d'Or vineyards. They'll be ok losing some grapes.

On the other hand I do feel for, for example, a small grower with a few rows in Mercurey who lives from hand to mouth.

Of course people who drink top wines and have met the winemaker and feel some connection will obviously feel empathy with them. I understand that. But there are so many people suffering in this world who deserve my empathy more than Aubert de Villaine and co IMO.

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Re: April Frost in Burgundy

#50 Post by Jim Anderson » April 17th, 2019, 7:59 am

James Billy wrote:
April 16th, 2019, 11:19 pm
I think I'd better make it clear that I do agree with Alan when it comes to top producers with huge amounts of top Cote d'Or vineyards. They'll be ok losing some grapes.

On the other hand I do feel for, for example, a small grower with a few rows in Mercurey who lives from hand to mouth.

Of course people who drink top wines and have met the winemaker and feel some connection will obviously feel empathy with them. I understand that. But there are so many people suffering in this world who deserve my empathy more than Aubert de Villaine and co IMO.
My advice to you would be the same as it is to Alan. There is dignity in silence at times and it is best to be aware of those times. If something doesn’t rise to your level of empathy because apparently you only have so much of it to go around, then fine. You’re not required to have sympathy for everyone. But going out of your way to point out that you don’t have sympathy for folks because of their station in life and because you consider their business or industry to be “incestuous” (you might want to either look that up or at least reconsider the use of it) simply lacks class, grace and dignity.
Co-owner, Patricia Green Cellars

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