Friday, December 29, 2006

Trouble for Ohio's Vineyards

Posted by on Fri, Dec 29, 2006 at 2:37 PM

The warm temperatures may be doing wonders for our complexions, but they're wreaking absolute havoc on Ohio's vineyards. December is normally the time of year when winemakers force themselves out of bed in the middle of the night to harvest their late winter grapes. The fruit is then pressed into a sweet "ice wine." The problem, however, is that if the vines don't freeze, the wine can't be made. Because of the spring-like temperatures, winemakers are scared that ice wine won't be bottled this year. And that would be a huge travesty for Ohio winemakers, who bank on ice wine as one of the region's specialties. ''No one that I know of in the whole eastern United States and Canada has harvested any ice wine,'' sighs Tony Debevc, owner of Debonne Vineyards in Madison. --Rebecca Meiser

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