2006 California Wine Sales & Other News
Spanish missionaries planted the first grapes in California in the 19th century. But until the 1976 Paris tasting, California’s wine industry was little more than a sparkle in the eyes of vintners and winemakers. After the “vinous shot heard round the world,” California wine has been steadily growing and has now earned an international reputation for excellence.
With this in mind, it is not surprising that 2006 was a record year for United States wine sales. According to Jon Fredrikson, of the Gomberg-Fredrikson report, 189 million cases of California Wine were sold in 2006, up two percent from ‘05. The retail value of this wine increased as well, up 8 percent, totaling $17.8 billion.
The domestic market for California Wine far surpasses international demand, as the total value of U.S. wine exports in 2006 was only $876 million. This number is up 30% from 2005. Additionally, California’s wines made up over 95% of all U.S. exports in 2006.
Other California Wine News
- E & J Gallo Winery announced that it has acquired 182 aces of vineyards in Napa Valley’s Chiles Valley form California Wine Co.
- Mario Monticelli was named winemaker for Trinchero Napa Valley in St. Helena. He is the former winemaker for Quixote Winery in Napa.
- David Tate is the new winemaker for Barnett Vineyards in St. Helena. Tate was previously assistant winemaker for Ridge Vineyards.
- Erich Bradley is the new winemaker for Hop Kiln Winery in Healdsburg and HK Generations Wines. Since 2003, Bradley has been winemaker at Audelssa winery in Glen Ellen.
- Joel Gott Wines promoted Alisa Jacobson to winemaker. Jacobson has been assistant winemaker since 2003.
- Amphora Winery owner-winemaker Rick Hutchinson hired Jay Kell as assistant winemaker. Kell was most recently associate brand manager at Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars in Napa.