• Alexander Smith

What's coming up in 2019?

Happy New Year to all of my readers and I wish all of you a prosperous and healthy 2019. Along with drinking good wine, of course.

2018 was a fantastic year for Pointsonwine, I visited Chile, Argentina, New York and Portugal tasting hundreds of wines along the way. I also completed my Certified Sommelier accreditation. The next steps will be become an official Italian and French wine scholar. These degrees are crucial, to better understand the history, diversity, wine making and future of these great countries.

Looking towards 2019, I will be travelling to Australia in just over a month. My aim, to find the best wines in Australia and to travel to every major wine growing region. If you are an Australian winery and I have not contacted you, then send me an email and I will see if we can arrange a visit. I will also be travelling to Oregon and California in June. The second half of the year, I am still in the planning stage, so stay tuned. I have an action packed year, and I look forward to sharing it with my readers.

As the year unfolds, if there are subjects on wine regions you wish for me to cover, write me a quick email alex@pointsonwine.com. I will be happy to help.

What to look out for in 2019?

The 2018 Bordeaux and Burgundy wines will be available en Primeur. I hope they will not be overpriced, however I fear they might be. There is a great deal of excitement around these vintages, so expect prices to be higher than the 2016 vintage, at least for Bordeaux.

California, had big forest fires in both 2017 and 2018. It is reported this is due to the dry weather, along with global warming. I will be looking forward to discussing this topic, when I travel to California in June. With Napa getting hotter and hotter, how are the winemakers reacting? When looking at Rhone which is in a similar situation, they are struggling with Syrah in Chateauneuf-du-Pape. Thomas Perrin from Beaucastel, recently told me that in 10-15 years he believes no Syrah will be grown in Southern Rhone. Now that is one heck of a statement. So Thomas is expecting a change in Chateauneuf-du-Pape blends in the coming years.

Having tasted some natural wines at the begging of this year, I can safely say I am over this craze. I am hoping in 2019, restaurants and wine bars replace these natural wines. Also I am done with le Vin Jaune as well.

More estate acquisitions? Wineries are consistently being sold to larger parties. The family owned estates are becoming fewer and fewer. This is due to the amount of work required to run both the vineyard and investing in the future of the winery. A significant amount of work is required to run a winery and to distribute the wine. To ensure margins are kept, I predict we will see more acquisitions in 2019, as family own estates try to focus on what they love which is the wine making, and less on the marketing and distribution side.

These are my predictions, however 12 months is a long time in the wine world, and so I am excited to see what the world of wine has up its sleeve.

What are your highlights in 2019? Do you plan to travel to any wine regions?

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