Some years are unarguably more momentous than others. The question is whether we can really recognise them without the benefit of hindsight. History may prove me wrong, but as 2014 comes to a close I’m prepared to declare it one of the most important years for American wine.
The last 12 months were filled with more than a few revelations, triumphs, and vindications, even as they revealed a good measure of hard truths for some.
Keep drinking America
The first wine-related news story of 2014 still lingers for American wine lovers as a warm glow of satisfaction. By the end of 2013, America had overtaken France as the world’s largest market for wine. While this statistic was forged as much through France’s declines as through America’s gains, it still represents a remarkable milestone worth celebrating. According to statistics, my (relatively numerous) countrymen still consume a measly 0.2 bottles per week on average (compared with the 1.2 per week average in France), but that continues to inch up every year, leaving some of us to make up the difference through more than our share of the good stuff…
This article is my monthly column at JancisRobinson.Com, Alder on America. If you’re not familiar with the site, I urge you to give it a try. It’s only £6.99 a month or £69 per year ($11/mo or $109 a year for you Americans) and well worth the cost, especially considering you basically get free, searchable access to the Oxford Companion to Wine ($65) and the World Atlas of Wine ($50) as part of the subscription costs. Click here to sign up.