The Human Element

  • In modern winemaking, terroir is not an absolute dictator of style, as may have been the case in earlier times. While modern technology expands the possibilities open to a winemaker, there is a unique quality expressed in the “sense of place” that is conveyed by those wines that bear the stamp of the terroir where they were produced.

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  • Several techniques can limit the influence of terroir in the vineyard, including; canopy management to manipulate the amount of sunshine that reaches the vine, limiting the amount of fruit on the vine to improve concentration, and irrigation to compensate for a lack of rainfall.

    There are also options in the winery that can compensate for a less-than-ideal site such as: must adjustments, concentration, pre-fermentation macerations, reverse osmosis, the use of enzymes during fermentation, and devices such as micro-oxygenation, among others. In many New World countries, interregional blending can also be used substantially reduce differences due to terroir.

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