Embarking on a vinous journey often leads us to discover the fascinating world of wine, where terroir plays a pivotal role in shaping the characteristics of every bottle. One intriguing aspect of this journey is understanding the distinction between cool-climate, and moderate to warm climate wines.
Cool Climate Wines
Cool climate wines are like a breath of fresh air, reflecting the essence of regions with lower average temperatures. These areas are typically characterized by a shorter growing season, which imparts a distinct personality to the grapes. Think of cool climate wines as the elegant ballet dancers of the wine world; they're graceful, delicate, and full of finesse.
Cool climate regions favour grape varieties that thrive in cooler conditions, such as Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, and Riesling. These grapes develop slowly, allowing for a more extended period and, in turn, preserving their natural acidity.
Expect vibrant acidity and lower alcohol levels in cool-climate wines. These bottles often showcase crisp and refreshing notes, with flavours ranging from green apple and citrus in white wines to red berries and floral undertones in red wines, as the extended ripening period in cool climates enhances the aromatic qualities of the grapes.
Regions such as Canada, Germany, Northern Italy, Austria, and notable parts of France like Champagne and the Loire. With that said, there are meso climates found in all regions. Exploration of climate influences will allow you to expand your roster of cool climate wines.
Warm Climate Wines
In contrast, warm-climate wines exude the warmth and richness of their sun-kissed origins. These regions boast longer growing seasons and higher temperatures, resulting in bold, full-bodied, and exuberant wines.
Grapes that thrive in warm climates include varieties like Tempranillo, Zinfandel, and Grenache. These grapes bask in the sun, reaching optimal ripeness more quickly and producing wines with higher alcohol content.
The intense sun exposure in warm climates contributes to the development of bold aromas. From jammy berries and dark chocolate in red wines to tropical fruits in whites, the aromatics of warm-climate wines are a heady and inviting experience.