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Did you know that the climate where the grapes are grown affects the flavour of your wine? This is one reason why the taste of wine varies so greatly, even when of the same variety.
Read on to learn all about cool climate wines!
What flavour characteristics can you expect from a cool climate wine?
Enjoy higher acidity, which translates to a more balanced wine. The wines also tend to have a lighter body, with more subtle, yet spicy fruit flavours. This happens because the fruit ripens more slowly in cooler climates.
Finally, there is less sugar in the fruit, meaning there is less alcohol in the wine — which is delightful for those who like to enjoy an extra glass with dinner.
There are four basic climate regions for growing delicious wines. They are based on the average temperature during the growing season which is from April to October. Cool climate regions have the coolest average temperatures ranging from 13-15 degrees. In general, cool climate regions enjoy four distinct seasons, cooler summers and a relatively short growing season.
Cool climate wines come from northern Italy and France, Germany, Austria, New Zealand, parts of Australia, Oregon and Washington State, and Chile — to name a few.
The main thing about growing grapes in a cool climate is that they have a harder time ripening. Less ripe grapes have a few effects on the resulting wine.
First, they are not as sweet, meaning that there is less sugar. This means the wine produces less alcohol as it ferments and turns out drier with a lighter body.
The grapes also retain more of their acidity, which helps achieve a more balanced wine without the use of additives. They can take the edge off a heavy red, often a welcome delight amongst Australia’s various warm wine-growing regions.
If crisp, dry, light wines are your thing, definitely look for wines made from grapes grown in cool climates. Look for Pinot Gris, Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc in white wines. Popular cool climate reds include Pinot Noir, Cabernet Franc, and Merlot. However, be sure to check the region as these wines can also be grown in warmer temperatures and have a different taste.
Looking for more great wine insights? Check out more of our articles!
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