France faces its smallest wine grape harvest since 1945, and in Britain, Molson Coors admits Carling beer is weaker than advertised for tax reasons. Kentucky Owl Bourbon expands distribution from one to seven states, and both the Napa Valley Grapegrowers and the Napa Valley Vintners are optimistic about the 2017 vintages. This is the news we’re thinking about here at SevenFifty Daily.

August 28, 2017
1. The Guardian

French wine production to fall by 18 percent compared to 2016 after spring frosts

France is expecting its smallest wine grape harvest since 1945 after an unusually mild March and a frosty April, experts have said. This year’s drop in production is “mainly attributable to the severe spring frost that affected all the wine-growing regions. FNSEA, a farmers’ union in France, said last week it expected a 40% drop in Bordeaux, and that North-eastern Alsace and Burgundy were also hit hard. Due to the dry summer, experts expect depressed yields in Beaujolais and the Rhône valley.

2. Daily Mail UK

Molson Coors admits Carling beer is weaker than advertised

Carling is marketed in the U.K. at 4 percent alcohol strength, but brewers Molson Coors have admitted it is weaker for tax reasons. The details emerged in a tax tribunal brought against the beer makers by U.K.’s tax authority over an alleged unpaid £50 million duty bill. Court documents reveal the lager has been made to a strength of about 3.7 percent for the past five years, but Molson Coors did not change the strength recorded on Carling labels to prevent drinkers from “demanding a slice” of the saving, tribunal documents said. The brewer insists customers have not been misled and its labeling was consistent with the law.

3. Distillery Trail

Kentucky Owl Bourbon expands distribution from one to seven states

The C.M. Dedman Kentucky Owl Bourbon Whiskey brand resumed distilling in 2014 after closing during the prohibition. Starting in September, it is set to distribute its bourbon to additional states: California and Illinois with Southern-Glazer’s Wine & Spirits, Florida with Breakthru Beverage Group, Kentucky and Texas with Republic National Distributing Company, and New York and Tennessee with Empire Merchants.

4. Beverage Trade Network

Napa Valley’s 2017 grape harvest continues to gain momentum

According to the Napa Valley Grapegrowers and Napa Valley Vintners associations, the 2017 vintages have received the perfect balance of winter rain and warm summer sunshine for a stellar harvest, and say string of warmer days in mid- and late-August, grapes are now coming in at a steady pace from several corners of the Napa Valley. In the weeks ahead, Napa Valley grapegrowers will start harvesting red varieties: Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Petit Verdot, Malbec, and Cabernet Franc.