August 3, 1914: On this day, Germany invaded France. The invasion led to the destruction of French vineyards, especially in Champagne. This region was known for having the best terroir in the world, but the war decimated its vineyards, significantly affecting wine production. Due to the war, more than half of Champagne’s population was lost. Germany persistently bombed and shelled the region, affecting wine production. As a result, the surviving population took shelter in underground quarries. Enthusiast winemakers continued with wine production, albeit with difficulty, during World War I and aged their wine in these underground quarries. The German invasion laid to waste many French vineyards and highly influenced the country’s wine production industry. For more information, see The Terroir of War, an article by Justin Postlethwaite on French Entrée.

August 3, 1936: On this day, Donald Marc Hess was born. Hess inherited a brewery from his father near Bern. When he was 20 years old, his father died. He managed to operate the family business after studying the brewing heritage as an apprentice in Bavaria. He specialized in a unique method of making non-alcoholic beer, which became popular throughout Switzerland.  He sold his brewery to a larger corporation after some time and bought a mineral spring in the Grisons village of Vals to start bottle mineral water. The Valser mineral water became the main brand in Switzerland. He expanded into the wine business in the 70’s and now stands as a multimillionaire wine magnate and art collector, the Hess Collection being his eponymous vineyard and winery.

August 3, 1981: On this day, the court ruling in New Jersey led to the set Farm Wineries Act of 1980. The Farm Winery Legislation in 1981 provided the impetus for the modernization of the wine business in the state of New Jersey. Up to 50,000 gallons of wine may now be produced yearly by wine farms thanks to this statute. Until then, restrictions left over from the end of Prohibition had approved one winery for every million people living in the state. Since the 1980s, the state’s wine industry has been progressively expanding in size. Although Trenton does not have up-to-date statistics on the overall area planted for grapes, the state’s wines were sold in the amount of 78,177 cases in 1998, an increase from the 66,300 cases sold in 1993, and there were maybe 13 wineries at the time.

August 3, 2004: On this day, The Wine Wrangler was established in Paso Robles, California. They take pleasure in their position as the first and leading wine tasting tour and transportation company to set foot in Paso Robles Wine Country. The firm has shared a plethora of wonderful experiences with people who are interested in learning more about the realm of vinology over the years. In Paso Robles and around San Luis Obispo County, it offers private and semi-private group wine tasting trips.

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