"Great wines come from stressed vines"

Really? I happened to see this quote while researching some information about the vineyard I had just visited. It was a scorcher the day we visited Long Point Vineyard. Not a visit for the wines, we had headed there to visit a friend's exhibit at their art gallery. But the quote got me to thinking about vineyards and some of the places I have seen vines planted. I've often wondered how on earth, ground that looks so dried out and depleted, is able to grow vines and grapes. Well, it turns out that...

Long Point Vineyard Entrance - love this mosaic

Great wines come from low-yielding vineyards planted in marginal climates on the poorest soils. Though hard on the vines, these tough conditions are good for the wine, because vines that are stressed must work harder to produce fruit, which leads to fewer but more concentrated and flavorful grapes.

By contrast, the vines used for bulk wines have it easy. They are planted in the fertile soils in ideal climates of regions such as California's Central Valley. Such regions are great for producing tons of grapes to fill up the bulk fermentation tanks, but not at all great for producing the complex, intense flavors needed to make great wine, because the vines are not stressed and the yields are way too high.

I stumbled across this info in an article by Ben Gilliberti in The Washington Post. A little impromptu vine appreciation lesson (and another fact to add to trivia nights). So in case you too have ever wondered why vineyards are often found in depleted looking areas, and how that whole system worked - well there you go.

Sculpture at Long Point Vineyard

The treehouse and acreage at Long Point Vineyard Lake Cathie NSW

The mosaic from Long Point Vineyard was created by Francesca O'Donnell and Vick Crompton - visit their website at Out There Design and Mosaic .