Wine shops fear impact of California earthquake

Don't Waste Your Money

Kathy Van Kirk, like a lot of wine shop owners, is nervous about supplies of Napa Valley wine.

Van Kirk is co-owner of The Wine Merchant, a shop that specializes in wine from small vineyards, including some of those damaged in the California quake.

She sells wine from one of Napa's most award winning small vineyards, Silver Oak, which reported losing hundreds of bottles in the quake.

Good news for consumers: Van Kirk says it's unlikely the quake will have much impact on popular brands, like Beringer, Mondavi and Gallo, due to their sheer size and vineyards across the state of California.

"Larger wineries I think will be able to bear the loss better than the small boutique wineries, which is really what Napa is," she said.

Small Wineries Feeling Impact

But she she worries that prices could spike on wine from small, specialty vineyards that were hit hardest, where just one broken barrel means hundreds of bottles lost.

"If you lose a barrel of wine, that's 300 bottles that could be devastating to the profit of a small winery."

For now, though, she is not raising prices on her Napa wine, and hoping that her distributors don't raise her prices in the coming days.

And that way you don't waste your money.


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