Friday, March 2, 2012
Let's fly at 45 degrees and taste the similiarity
This month's theme for my wine club is Flying at 45 Degrees ...why, you ask? Well, aside from wanting to encourage our New World-oriented palates to branch out across the ocean, there's also some serious comparative value at looking at wines that are around the 45 degree mark in latitude. Notice how Washington, Bordeaux and Burdundy are all right there:
While the growing season is slightly shorter from beginning to end than more southerly wine regions, the number of sun hours received in the 45 degree latitude mark is equal due to incredibly long days at such a high latitude – receiving up to 17 and a half hours of sun each day. (I remember when we were in France in June it felt like the day lasted forever - at 10pm you could still see for miles. In Ireland it was even more insane with sun from 7a-11:30p!) So, the climate, soil, and winemaking techniques differ, but some say the latitude similarity is the reason for the similarity in quality of the wines. We'll see!