As reported by Reuters, Audacia winery in South Africa’s Western Cape region recently patented a new technique using Rooibos (a native South African tea) for wine, beer and cider production. Based on research conducted by Stellenbosch University’s Department of Viticulture and Oenology, the winery has adopted Rooibos wood chips in lieu of oak in order to capitalize on the tea’s naturally occurring antioxidants to preserve wine. Potentially, this may replace sulfur dioxide and other additives.
Going where no drink has ever gone before, a company dubbed the Cosmic Lifestyle Corporation has launched a Kickstarter campaign to produce the first zero-gravity cocktail glass. Combining theoretical space science with the classic Martini glass, the company hopes to design a cocktail glass that will prevent liquids from floating so space travellers and astronauts can enjoy drinks. The $30,000 campaign will finance real-life testing in weightless environments, as well as cost of materials and 3D-printing services to construct the glass.
In the Trade
Dr. Peter H. Cressy, CEO of the Distilled Spirits Council of the United States (DISCUS), announced to the DISCUS board of directors his desire to step down as CEO at the end of 2015. A search committee, which will include Dr. Cressy and headed up by DISCUS Vice Chairman and Moët Hennessy USA CEO Jim Clerkin, will begin their search for the new CEO soon.
On March 3, The Long Island Merlot Alliance (LIMA) announced the appointment of wine and spirits journalist Amy Zavatto as its new executive director. In celebration of LIMA’s 10th anniversary, Zavatto will spearhead a yearlong campaign of Merlot-focused events and educational opportunities, as well as the establishment of Long Island Merlot Month in November 2015.
On March 2, The Napa Valley Vintners (NVV) announced its goal to enroll every eligible member into Napa Green Land or Winery program by the end of 2020. Developed in the early 2000s as a voluntary, environmental certification program for Napa County vineyards and wineries, Napa Green has improved habitats for native fish species, limited soil loss and reduced flood events along the Napa River, as well as saved more than 3.5 million pounds of carbon dioxide from entering the atmosphere through recycling and other green measures.
On the Social Scene
Contributing Editor Anne Krebiehl MW sent out some postcard-worthy dispatches of Budapest, where she is presenting a workshop on New Zealand’s diverse wines and participating in a blind tasting panel with other experts.
Budapest is so beautiful and so very unintelligible. .. pic.twitter.com/RkaRdFuJAH
— Anne Krebiehl MW (@AnneInVino) March 7, 2015
Italian Editor Kerin O’Keefe visited New York City to host a special Barolo tasting at leading wine shop, Chambers Street Wines. The author of Barolo and Barbaresco, it was appropriate that O’Keefe poured top-flight vintage Barolos, as seen below.
On March 12, keep an eye on Contributing Editor Matt Kettmann March 12 as he moderates a panel at the 21st Annual Central Coast Insights Wine Event, titled “Central Coast Diversity: Blessing or Curse.”