California freezing damage to vineyards

Saturday, April 26th 2008, 9:08 am
By: News 9

Wine grape growers in California's Wine Country are trying to figure out how much of their crops were destroyed by this week's frost.

In Napa, Sonoma, and Mendocino Counties, the damage estimates are in the millions of dollars.

March and April brought freezing temperatures for over ten days. That freeze dried and destroyed many pinot grape berries at local wineries.

Dennis De La Montanya of De La Montanya Wines was out checking his vineyard Friday (4/25). He says he's been avoiding his vineyard since the frost hit.

Montanya is counting on his second sprouting. A reddish green bud on the base of the vines means that there will be a new shoot soon. But no one knows how much fruit the second bloom will produce.

Growers are concerned that the affected chardonnay and pinot grapes will be in short supply by harvest time. That creates another problem because any wine label that has Sonoma on it has to have 75-percent of its grapes come from the county.

Copyright CBS 2008.