Top 10 Wine News and Opinion Articles of 2022

The past 12 months have largely been a time of evolution for the wine and hospitality industries, as they push towards a post-pandemic recovery while trying to gain a better understanding of new consumers and wine’s place in everyday life.

Some of the most famous and reliable family-owned wine brands have changed hands, driven by economic forces and inheritance issues, signaling the possibility of more shifts to come. And previous challenges remain: Winemakers continue to battle a changing climate, with an unexpected, violent storm dealing a blow to France’s famed Châteauneuf-du-Pape appellation. The industry is still tested by crime, from fakes and outright thefts to grand investment schemes, such as one promising massive loans backed by rare French wines.

But the news was far from all bad. After they were dealt crushing blows during the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic, restaurants moved closer to stability and normalcy, with some even seeing growth. And research is improving our understanding of wine’s relationship to health, as wellness-conscious consumers look for new options from a changing industry with its eyes on the future.

Top News and Opinion Articles

1. New Study Suggests Red Wine Reduces COVID Infection Rates

The COVID-19 pandemic rapidly changed life around the world, killing millions, damaging businesses and leaving many people with lingering symptoms. Medical researchers moved quickly to better understand and, hopefully, counter the virus. Early this year, a study analyzed health data on nearly 500,000 U.K. residents and found that those who consumed one to two glasses of red wine per day had a lower risk of contracting COVID, when compared with non-drinkers. (Subjects who drank white wine also had a lower risk, though less significantly.) Wine lovers enthusiastically seized upon this news as a sign of hope and yet another reason to continue enjoying a nightly glass with dinner. But the study, published in the journal Frontiers in Nutrition, had some limitations, and its authors have called for further research. Nonetheless, it has offered a new step on the long path to understanding how moderate wine consumption relates to our personal health.

2. Wine Spectator Reveals 2022 Restaurant Award Winners

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Restaurants were some of the hardest-hit businesses around the world during the COVID-19 pandemic, faced with rapid pivoting, slowed supply chains and trickling foot traffic. Sadly, this forced many establishments to close. However, thanks to vaccines and a better understanding of the virus, 2022 was largely a year of recovery for hospitality, and restaurants welcomed guests back with even more creative and ambitious wine programs. Wine Spectator celebrated their resilience and determination in 2022, honoring nearly 3,200 restaurants with Restaurant Awards, including well-known names and newcomers alike. Two restaurants were newly presented with our highest honor, the Grand Award: New York City’s Gabriel Kreuther and Napa Valley’s Press.

3, 4 and 6. Three Old-Guard Napa Wineries Change Hands

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Consolidation has long been a part of the wine business, as estates outgrow their founders’ original vision, investors need to cash out, the next generation doesn’t want to take over and…

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