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Climate categories in viticulture


In viticulture, the climates of wine regions are categorised based on the overall characteristics of the area's climate during the growing season. While variations in macroclimate are acknowledged, the climates of most wine regions are categorised (somewhat loosely based on the Köppen climate classification) as being part of a Mediterranean (for example Tuscany), maritime (ex: Bordeaux) or continental climate (ex: Columbia Valley). The majority of the world's premium wine production takes place in one of these three climate categories in locations between the and in both the northern and southern hemisphere. While viticulture does exist in some tropical climates, most notably Brazil, the amount of quality wine production in those areas is so small that the climate effect has not been as extensively studied as other categories.

Beyond establishing whether or not viticulture can even be sustained in an area, the climatic influences of a particular area goes a long way in influencing the type of grape varieties grown in a region and the type of viticultural practices that will be used. The presence of adequate sun, heat and water are all vital to the healthy growth and development of grapevines during the growing season. Additionally, continuing research has shed more light on the influence of dormancy that occurs after harvest when the grapevine essentially shuts down and reserves its energy for the beginning of the next year's growing cycle.



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Wikipedia

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