FRANCE: Whine of the Century?

FRANCE Whine of the Century?

April is the cruelest month, as French vintners, especially in Bordeaux, have again learned. Instead of spring showers came the worst frost in more than 30 years, killing early buds in the vineyards. First assessments halved production forecasts for the year -- a loss of almost $690 million. Said Hubert Bouteiller of the Interprofessional Council for Wines in Bordeaux: "In one fell swoop, the work of a year's pruning was destroyed."

But chill winds are not ill winds for all. After three consecutive good harvests, the market is glutted with French wine, leaving producers and merchants with huge stocks. Says Jacques...

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