Uncorkings: Wine Production in 2012 is Likely to Reach Lowest Levels Since 1975

Plus more news and notes from the world of wine.


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The International Organisation of Vine and Wine (OIV) has revealed figures indicating that global wine production in 2012 is likely to reach levels between 243.5–252.9 million hectoliters, the lowest totals since at least 1975. Partly to blame werewas the climatic conditions in Europe, which caused a severe reduction in volume output.

David S. Taub, the C.E.O. of Palm Bay International and the winner of Wine Enthusiast’s Lifetime Achievement Wine Star Award in 2011, died November 8 at the age of 72 after an extended battle with kidney disease. Taub, a native New Yorker, was famed for steering Pinot Grigio to the United States by successfully marketing the Italian brand Cavit as the classic Italian white wine.  Today, Palm Bay’s import portfolio represents more than 70 producers from more than 10 countries, including luxury brands like Jean-Luc Colombo from the Rhône Valley in France and Planeta from Sicily in Italy. Taub is survived by his wife Linda, three sons—Marc, who is president and C.O.O. of Palm Bay, Andrew and Josh—and six grandchildren. Read the full story.

Frank J. Prial, author of The New York Times column Wine Talk, which he penned for three decades beginning in the ’70s, passed away on November 6 at the age of 82 due to complications of with prostate cancer. For the Baby Boomer generation in particular, Prial was considered one of the most authoritative voices on the topic of wine. Prial is survived by his wife, the former Jeanne Shook; three sons, Frank Jr., Mark and Dunstand; his sister Patricia; his brother, Donald; and seven grandchildren. Read the full story.

Sylvie Cazes, general manager of the Bordeaux estates owned by Champagne group Louis Roederer, including Pauillac second-growth Château Pichon Longueville Comtesse de Lalande, has announced she will be leaving her position to pursue family-related and political projects. Nicolas Glumineau, who has worked at second-growth Château Montrose in Saint-Estèphe since 2007, was named Cazes’s successor. She will also step down from her role as president of the Union des Grand Crus de Bordeaux. Cazes has a minority stake in several Cazes family estates, including the Pauillac fifth-growth Château Lynch Bages, but she does not have daily-operation responsibilities at the estates. Cazes will remain president of Bordeaux’s Wine Cultural Center Project (Centre Culturel etl Touristique du Vin), a council in charge of developing the wine trade and wine tourism of the region. 

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