“A record number of new Swedish wines will be released, both in terms of volume and in number,” said Hans Håkanson, CEO of Svenska Hantverksdrycker (Swedish Craft Beverages).
There are around 40 wine-growers in Sweden and the long, dry and hot summer of 2018 benefited their business. The organization Swedish Wine was already speaking of a record harvest last autumn, between 30 and 50 percent greater than usual, leading to an estimated 200 tonnes of grapes.
This was due primarily to the good weather but also to increased acreage.
“The wine farmers were able to harvest in several batches, which made it possible to make several different kinds of wine,” said Håkanson, explaining that the increased hours of sunlight led to a good level of grape maturity and increased harvest volumes. “When you have more material you also have more opportunity to experiment.”
One such producer was Murat Sofrakis, who has run a vineyard in Klagshamn outside Malmö since 2001 and reported a harvest last year that was 25 percent higher than the average. Having more grapes available allowed him to work on new kinds of wine.
“We looked a little more at dessert wines and then we also made some orange wine; it is very trendy right now. These were the extra things we had the opportunity to do,” Sofrakis said.
However, he said it was “too early to say” whether the warmer weather led to a better quality of wine. Much of the wine produced from last autumn's harvest will be stored and sold over the next few years.
“The vintage is very accessible, it is already good to drink now because of the extreme weather,” Håkanson explained. “That's good, because most people who buy Swedish wine drink it within the first few years. But how long the durability it is on such a vintage remains to be seen.”
Swedish wine-growers are benefiting from an increased demand from customers for small-scale, locally produced food and drinks, he also said.
wine-producers – vinproducenter
harvest – skörd
grapes – druvor
to experiment – experimentera
vineyard – vingård
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