Irish Times: Where Will The World's Best Wines Come From This Year?


Greece, Spain, Turkey or France?
It's hard to predict the world's next “it” wines; one might as well be using a crystal ball to predict the weather. However, this past week an Irish Times columnist gave his predictions about where the world's next favorite wines will come from in 2015. Reporter John Wilson said this year's predicted favorites will reflect the changing landscape of global viticulture as well as the particular tastes of Irish wine drinkers.
“The wine books have been slowly updated as the wine-producing world has expanded north and south over the last decade,” Wilson wrote. “An increased knowledge of viticulture combined with a changing climate allows regions once considered unsuitable for viticulture to produce good – and occasionally excellent – wines.”
The Irish, he said, have an interest in Greek wines, and that interest will grow this year.
“Greece seems best poised to take advantage of our increased interest with a plethora of its own local grapes,” he wrote. “Croatia is not far behind.”
Aside from these burgeoning Mediterranean wine regions, Wilson predicted that the Irish predilection toward Pinot Noir will continue its growth.
“Chile, New Zealand and Germany are the main providers, with both Australian pinot and Burgundy looking a little expensive,” he wrote. “I can also see us drinking more Blaufränkisch from Australia as well as some of its excellent white wines.”
Wilson said Spain's region of Galicia, long tied to the Celts, may produce some wild-card wines this year. 
“Our interest in Galician wines will expand to include the lesser-known regions such as Monterrei, Valdeorras and Ribeira Sacra,” he wrote. “There are some fascinating wines being made in this part of Spain.”
Wilson and his fellow oenophiles in the Emerald Isle will also take a liking to Portuguese whites.
“White wines from the northern part of the country will continue to impress; look out for Alvarinho that competes favourably with Spanish Albariño,” he said.
The bent toward Pinot Noir and white wines is indicative of Ireland's ever-growing preference for “lighter, less oaky and alcoholic wines,” Wilson said.
However, Wilson did make recommendations for big bruisers in Europe.
“If you can find European wines from 2010, I would lap them up. In recent months I have tasted some excellent wines from Piedmont, Tuscany, Bordeaux, the northern Rhone and Burgundy from this vintage,” he said.
He also pointed out that the continent's 2009 vintage isn't a bad choice either.
“Despite being praised and then damned as too lush, the 2009 vintage is also providing me with some pleasurable drinking,” he wrote. “I hope you enjoy many great bottles of wine with friends and family over the course of 2015.”

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