$687M for California Drought Relief: The California legislature this week passed a bill to provide drought-relief to those stricken by the current parched conditions in the Golden State, according to this report. The $687 million legislation will provide money for water management programs in drought-stricken areas, according to reports. The conditions are forcing farmers to choose among their crops. The state may get some help from NASA, of all places, according to this report.
More Marketing for Mezzacorona: With sales passing the 1 million-case mark, Italy’s Gruppo Mezzacarona plans to redouble its marketing efforts this year in a bid for further growth, according to this Shanken News Daily blog post.
Evening Land Gains High-Profile Investors: Though there are few details, an interesting partnership was announced between Rajat Parr’s Sandhi Winery and Oregon’s Evening Land Vineyards, according to Decanter magazine. This will be one to watch with the players involved, but also to see just how Evening Lands’ vineyards evolve. Separately, Oregon continues to make gains with the wine consumer, according to this report.
Parker Stirs the Drink: It’s always interesting when wine tasting guru Robert Parker (pictured at left) offers his opinions on the state of the wine industry, but at a recent event, those types of comments came among a cadre of his fellow accomplished wine writers, sparking a somewhat heated debate in the blogosphere. Jon Bonne, wine writer for the San Francisco Chronicle, offered a response to Parker’s comments on the trend toward low-alcohol, more nuanced California wines. Parker's much-discussed response at the conference can be found here. It’s a debate that will continue to rage, within California and the wine industry, and though there’s no right answer necessarily, it is an interesting conversation< to have.