As wineries across Napa and Sonoma Counties continue to pick up pieces and mop up spilled wine after Sunday morning's 6.0 earthquake, reports have been coming in as to just how much of the good grape juice was lost and what the overall economic toll is looking like for the industry. The worst thing seems to be the timing of the quake, right as harvest has begun for many wineries and several weeks earlier than usual because of the drought.
Also, the greatest shaking occurred in the southern part of the county, near American Canyon, which is home to multiple large storage facilities used by big wineries.
Winemaker Steve Matthiasson told the LA Times that at least 1,000 barrels at a storage facility had toppled to the ground, including all of his 2013 red wines, and he did not yet know how much had been lost. Disentangling the fallen barrels, he said, was going to be "incredibly difficult and dangerous" since the full barrels weigh 900 pounds each.
B.R. Cohn Winery in Glen Ellen reported to KTVU that they had lost as much as 50 percent of their inventory, with bottles that retail from $40 to $100. "It's not just good wine we lost," said winemaker Tom Montgomery, "it's our best wine."
Sparkling winery Domaine Carneros reported no barrel damage but said there had been some minor damage to two large fermentation tanks currently filled with wine, which had swayed off their concrete moorings.
Dahl Vineyards in Yountville reported the loss of one barrel of Pinot Noir that was worth $16,000.
You'll be glad to know that Lt. Governor Gavin Newsom's wineries had no barrel collapses, as he told CNN.
Ceja Family Vineyards sustained a bunch of damage in their downtown Napa tasting room, saying that only "one wine glass survived" and that the place "looked like a river of red," according to the Napa Valley Register. Facing the end of their lease next month, they may not be reopening.
Also, there have been reports of "modest damage" to grape harvesting and/or crushing equipment, which could have an impact on harvest for some.
No full assessment of damages, or the estimated dollar amount, has yet been made.
Meanwhile, downtown Napa businesses like Fagiani's bar and Oxbow Public Market are back open today.
A forklift under the barrel rubble at a Napa winery. pic.twitter.com/SSRNRk72Vm— Maureen Downey (@moevino) August 24, 2014
Napa Barrel Care, where many producers store barrels as wine ages. Hopefully it can B cleaned up w/out 2 much loss!! pic.twitter.com/hkFW1n3UtO— Maureen Downey (@moevino) August 24, 2014