Uncorkings for 10.3.11

News and notes from the world of wine.

A growing number of states and cities in the U.S. are tinkering with laws that regulate alcohol sales as a way to build their budgets, the New York Times reported.  Twelve states have increased taxes on alcohol or changed alcohol laws to boost revenue, including Maryland, which in July raised the sales tax from 6% to 9%––the first increase of its type and one that is expected to reel in $85 million per year. In November, voters in Georgia will decide whether to repeal colonial-era laws that ban alcohol sales on Sunday.

U.S. consumers prefer domestic wine, according to a 2011 study in the Journal of Wine Economics, a trend that has accelerated compared to 2010. The number one reason? A simple preference for buying American-made products, the study said. Other reasons included more favorable pricing compared to foreign wines, larger selections and a greater number of outlets that carry domestic wines.

Last Wednesday, California Governor Jerry Brown signed a bill that reversed a Prohibition-era ban on infused alcohol in bars in the state. 

We’ve heard of “bird-friendly” coffee–but wine? Klamath Bird Observatory and ConsciousWine have developed a new set of sustainability standards, evaluating participating wineries in Oregon’s Willamette Valley on a range of bird-friendly practices from building properly sized bird boxes to promoting overall biodiversity.

Vinitaly, the Ambassador of Italian wines, will honor six celebrated female Italian wine producers during its second consumer wine-tasting fundraiser to benefit the American Cancer Society on Wednesday, October 19, 2011, in New York City. The 2010 event raised $40,000 for the American Cancer Society. These six leading Women of Italian Wine represent prestigious wineries from various regions throughout Italy:

  • Marilisa Allegrini, Allegrini (Veneto)
  • Cristina Mariani-May, Castello Banfi (Tuscany)
  • Elisabetta Geppetti, Fattoria Le Pupille (Tuscany)
  • Camilla Lunelli, Ferrari (Trentino)
  • Francesca Planeta, Planeta (Sicily)
  • Daniela Mastroberardino, Terradora (Campania)
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