Harsh Winter Impacting Local Wineries


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Cold weather and growing grapes do not mix well together. Just ask the folks up in Geneva who say this past winter ravished their grape farms.

Harpersfield Vineyard, an estate winery (meaning all grapes are grown on the property), will be totaling the damage in the coming weeks. "The jury is still out on the impact, but the 2014 buds are all but gone," says Patty Ribic, the winery's director of operations. "Last year was a fabulous harvest though, and our cellar is so full we will have plenty of wine for our guests."

Across the Geneva area, there is still hope that though complete bud loss might be the case, the vines themselves might be able to be salvaged and trained for new growth.

"We are hoping for the best but all the growers are expecting the worst," says Dave Otto, managing partner of Old Firehouse Winery.

Geneva's Ferrante Winery, with over 400 acres of farm, is the region's most popular locally produced name, and the one with the most to lose. "In 20 years we have never had weather like this. The crop is lost there is no question about it," says Nick Ferrante, co-owner Ferrante Winery. "The good news is we made a lot of wine last year."

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