Technique

Cold-Climate Grape Growing: Tips from the Pros

Even the most ideal climates for growing grapes face certain hardships, but growing vines in colder climates definitely have more than their share. Get tips on what to grow and what precautions to take from three pros in various colder climates. Winemaker: Coenraad Stassen,  Brys Estate Vineyard and Winery, Traverse City, Michigan There are just shy of 50 acres planted on our estate. We focus on European vinifera, including Cabernet Franc, Merlot, Pinot Noir, Riesling, Chardonnay, Pinot Blanc, Pinot Gris, and Gewürztraminer. The Old Mission Peninsula of Michigan does not have the longest track record when it comes to growing grapes, so in a sense we are still dialing in the varieties that work, in our climate. The most important aspect for me is finding vinifera varieties that can handle our winter temperatures well enough to produce a world class wine. We are focused on early to mid-season ripening varietals. Another factor is to find a nursery that can provide strong and healthy planting materials to ensure that you can see the vine through to maturity and producing premium grapes