Air quality around the Inland Northwest has been quite bad for at least a week and many of us are dealing with the remnants of smoke in the air, but it’s also true for vineyards.
WSU Enology Professor Jim Harbertson said much of the smoke and dust on the vine can be washed off, but that doesn’t totally stop infiltration. And while some wines are looking for a smokier flavor, not all benefit.
“I think the trouble though is that you may get smoky things in things you don’t necessarily want it to be in.”
There is no one variety that is more susceptible to smoke than another and Harbertson says there are some treatments available.
Harbertson said WSU is working with vineyards to help those who might have suffered smoke damage.
“Figure out which ones that have had that and then send juice samples in to see if they have any evidence of taint and then take precautions in the winery.”
WSU researchers, in a 2012 paper, recommended harvesting earlier if your vineyard has been effected by smoke.
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