I love my friends. They send me Emails that they think I should read, which of course will elicit an opinion.
My friend Paul Moe in Florida just sent a link to me from Smirky Chimp saying, “They’re all ‘wine barons!’”
I wrote back, after reading the story entitled, Sour Grapes in ‘Wine Country’—Intense Challenges to Wineries Erupt, by Shepherd Bliss | March 6, 2015 – 10:22am…
Yeah, it’s going on. High rent district.
I wanted to comment, but didn’t have time to figure out how I can register… It had to do with the comments of…. “Come to my state!”
What they don’t get about “their” states… California is on the Pacific Plate and everything from the Sierras east is on the American Plate. It’s totally different geology – ergo, totally different terroir. THIS is why other states can’t make a go of it, the way the West Coast can and does:
- Different plates, ergo geology
- Mediterranean climate, which they can’t duplicate
- Too much water, which will dilute the fruit’s intense flavors
- Terroir is everything, and we’ve got tons of it
- If you don”t want to believe it, okay… BUT… follow the money
UPDATE: Keven Pogue: You said: “California is on the Pacific Plate and everything from the Sierras east is on the American Plate. It’s totally different geology – ergo, totally different terroir. THIS is why other states can’t make a go of it, the way the West Coast can and does:”
Actually, all California wine regions north of the Bay Area are east of the San Andreas fault and therefore on the North American plate, just like Missouri, Virginia, and Labrador. Many wine regions further south, e.g. Paso Robles ARE on the Pacific plate since they are west of the fault. The Sierra Nevada has nothing to do with the location of the plate boundary. And it’s not “totally different geology” on either side of the San Andreas. Many types of rock (granite, sandstone, mudstone, etc.) can be found on both sides of the fault.
Shepherd Bliss raises some great points, by starting out:
(Sebastopol, California) Sonoma County’s premium wine industry in the San Francisco North Bay has become a magnet that attracts developers from around the country, across oceans, and nearby. They move heavy industrial operations into rural areas and expand them to become event centers and commercial bottling operations. Under the pretense that they are merely agriculture, rather than alcohol-producing factories, large wineries seek to avoid Environmental Impact Reports (EIR) and the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA)…
He also writes:
For $41 million dollars, a subsidiary of the Chinese developer Oceanwide Holding recently purchased the 186 acres of La Camapagna near Kenwood, off the nearby busy Highway 12. It includes the rights to develop a winery and luxury resort. This is one of the largest stretches of land on the Sonoma Valley floor that has not yet been “improved.” The citizens group Valley of the Moon Alliance stalled a previous development on this land by a 2004 lawsuit. Oceanwide Holding also plans to develop what would be the tallest skyscraper in San Francisco.
I once read, and believe, that a nation’s wealth is measured by how much gold they have, starting with Italy’s Roman Empire. We do all understand, don’t we, that the US has begun selling off its gold to China?
Dr. Shepherd Bliss III’s background:
Shepherd Bliss teaches at Sonoma State University, owns Kokopelli Farm, and has contributed to two dozen books, most recently to the Sierra Club’s “Ecotherapy: Healing with Nature in Mind.” He can be reached at email@example.com and shares the website www.vowvop.org with other members of the Veterans Writing Group.
Lecturer at Sonoma State University, Psychology and Humanities Departments
Current ~ Sonoma State University
Previous ~ Harvard University
If anyone understands what’s happening behind the scenes, I’d give it to Dr. Bliss.
You, too, should read his evaluation of what’s happening. I would have, but I’m rushing against time to have time away from my computer for the next week…
My bottom line is that progress always happens much too quickly, and ruination also happens before anyone can figure out what’s going on. Once the damage is done, there’s no turning back. If you don’t believe that, find any Native Born American… of the First Nation People… and they’ll give you an ear full.
Meanwhile, if we want to protect what we have, we have to take an active role by first bringing it to people’s attention, just as Dr. Bliss has.