San Rafael, Calif.—
Standing water remains after storms pass through the Russian River Valley of Sonoma County, Calif. Photo: Merriam Vineyards
After enduring half a decade of drought, vineyards in Northern California were drenched in the past month, but all that rain delivered problems as well.
The Russian River Valley historically has experienced disaster-level floods; last week, local TV stations broadcast shots of residents kayaking inside their own homes. From Balletto Vineyards & Winery in Santa Rosa (Sonoma County), Calif., brand ambassador Nick Frey commented that even a week after the early January storm, winery customers were still calling to see if Balletto was open. An emergency alert advising people to stay home and avoid unnecessary travel was broadcast on smartphones for several days, further deterring visitors.