Tag Archives: vielle vignes

Do Old Vines Make Better Wine?

So, yesterday there was a wine-trivia tease: “Did you know that ‘Old Vine’ isn’t a regulated term in the US?” Thought I’d better follow up with a little more substance! So, do old vines make better wine?

The short answer is “we don’t know.” There’s no real evidence that old vines produce wine of greater depth or complexity. Yet, the Europeans put a lot of stock in it (or, at least they use it as a marketing tool – how cynical of me!) But, do they think old vines matter just because Grandpa said they matter? A lot of the European school still relieas on what Dad and Grand-dad did, which is kinda nice…

I like to ask winemakers this very question whenever I get the chance. One common response is “Maybe it’s not so much the fact that the vineyard is older. The most likely reason a vineyard survives into old age is that it’s a really good one. No one’s going to hang on to a mediocre vineyard for 80 years, right?” Makes sense, doesn’t it? Continue reading

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