Thank you everyone for your responses to last week's topic on Kouloura!
This week: Fog
How can fog impact growing conditions in the vineyard?
In warmer regions fog can protect the vines from over-ripening too soon, allowing the vines to maintain desired acid levels. In cooler places however, it can block sun light necessary to fully ripen, essentially halting photosynthesis. The wind factor in a cooler climate region will lower temperatures even more so where there is fog you hope for lower wind activity.
Also, fog and botrytis (along with all of the unwanted fungi) are bffs!
A classic example of this would be Sauternes. The Sauternes region is South of the Bordeaux city, fringed by the Garonne and the Ciron rivers. The water of Ciron is cooler than that from the Garonne, so during Fall every year when the weather is relatively dry, fog is produced every evening to the next morning when the water from the 2 rivers meet.This is an ideal growing environment for the fungus Botrytis Cinerea which would proliferate until the mid-day sun stops its activity. This daily cycle would repeat itself everyday . And the classic noble rot grapes are the raw materials for the now world famous wine.
In a region such as the Sta. Rita Hills of Santa Barbara, which lies in close proximity to the Pacific Ocean, and has an East-West transverse running mountains, fog, a buffer between grapes and the sunshine can assist the grapes in cooling and acidic respiration.