Climate change is already transforming the wine industry
Antonio Busalacchi knows quality wine. As a sommelier, his educated palate can discern the oak undertones or mineral accents of a wine — flavors that elude most wine drinkers. He picks up on other nuances too. One sip of deep, inky purple, and he can distinguish the jammy, syrup-ripe fruit flavor of a shiraz grown in a warm climate from the lean olive notes of a syrah, made from the same grape, grown in a cooler region of France.
In his day job, Busalacchi offers another take on his favorite wines. A climatologist at the University of Maryland, he recognizes that he soon may be praising the merits of a fine English — not French —sparkling wine, or discussing the complexity of a world-class Tasmanian cabernet sauvignon.