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Smoky Air’s Toll On Rogue Valley Wines Still Unknown

OPB | Aug. 12, 2013 11:59 a.m. | Updated: July 20, 2014 10:09 a.m. | Medford, Oregon

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OPB Staff

Grape growers in the Rogue Valley are waiting — and wondering — about the longterm effects of this year’s severe wildfire season on their harvest.

Low-hanging soot in the air can affect the flavor of a wine, depending on how long the smoky conditions last.

Just a touch of smoke isn’t necessarily a bad thing.

In fact, winery officials tell The Medford Mail Tribune it may even enhance the flavors of their vintages.

But if the smoke in the air persists for too much longer, it could take more of a toll.

The newspaper reports that smoke-tainted grapes can retain unforgiving odors of ashtray, screeching rubber tires, disinfectant or charred meat.

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