For the last 8,000 years, the wine grape has had very little sex. This unnatural abstinence threatens to sap the grape’s genetic health and the future pleasure of millions of oenophiles. [Italics added.]
. . .
[M]erlot is intimately related to cabernet franc, which is a parent of cabernet sauvignon, whose other parent is sauvignon blanc, the daughter of traminer, which is also a progenitor of pinot noir, a parent of chardonnay.
This web of interrelatedness is evidence that the grape has undergone very little breeding since it was first domesticated,
See article at: NYT 25Jan11 – Lack of Sex Among Grapes Tangles a Family Vine