Great Northwest Wine
March 2, 2017

As expected, the Washington wine industry’s 2016 harvest for grapes was a record.

The Washington State Wine Commission released statistics Wednesday morning, and the report showed a record crop of 270,000 tons harvested last fall, eclipsing 2014’s record of 227,000 tons.

Leading the way was Cabernet Sauvignon at a stunning 71,100 tons, making it by far the king of Washington wine.

“That’s a lot,” said Kevin Corliss, vice president of vineyard operations for Ste. Michelle Wine Estates. “I knew it was going to be big.”

Cab now makes up 26 percent of the state’s total production and is the first grape to crack 70,000 tons in one season. That figure surpasses the state’s entire crop of 1999.

Corliss has a good handle on the state’s grape crop because Ste. Michelle uses two out of every three wine grapes grown in Washington. He said Cab acreage increased a bit more than 5 percent last season. This doesn’t include vineyards coming into full production, something that takes up to four years after vines are planted.

“What we see going forward is steady growth,” he said. “Cab is still king.”>>>Read entire article on Great Northwest Wine