This week’s vocabulary word came to me in a Wall Street Journal article referring to an oenophile nightmare.

First, I should explain that oenophile isn’t the word I’m highlighting, though I’ll take a quick moment to explain its origin is the Greek oinos (wine) and phile (one that loves). I may not be an expert, but I do love the pleasure of having a glass of wine with dinner.

Second, now I can’t find that WSJ article to link to. I guess I was so shook up that I forgot to copy the link into my notes app and search has led me nowhere.

But to focus on our task, the article highlighted two simultaneous problems facing the wine producers of the world. Recent Northern California wildfires have destroyed several vineyards and the heatwave in Southern Europe has desiccated many more.

Desiccate comes from the Latin desiccatus which is the past participle of desiccare. Siccare means to dry and de means thoroughly, so the modern translation of “to dry thoroughly” has remained the same for millennia.

When a grape vine is starved for water, it produces smaller fruit, much the same as any other fruit bearing plant does. The end result is that the Southern Europe winemakers expect lower yields just as the Californians will see a smaller harvest. Put it together, and that glass of wine is only going to get more expensive.

P.S. – EPPIL (My Ever Patient Partner In Life) and I have taken to doing a daily gratitude toast. We pick one thing that happened that day that we are thankful for and salute it. It’s a fun tradition and helps to focus on the good things. It’s particularly valuable on those days that don’t seem so great, even if it takes us a bit to come up with the toast. Whether you enjoy wine or not, I highly recommend taking a moment each day and acknowledging something good that happened.


  1. Juno's mom on September 5, 2022 at 1:09 pm

    My favorite wines, biodynamic Sauvignon Blanc and Merlot have risen steeply. Since food and wine are an ancient pairing, I won’t be deterred. I’d give up streaming services first. 😉

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