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Wine News

Brazilian wine crops at the double

Anyone who knows anything about wine knows that vines produce grapes once a year, but just to prove there’s always an exception to the rule, Waitrose is selling a Brazilian wine called Rio Sol, which is a double-cropper.

Wine buyer Nick Room explained to ThirtyFifty that the grapes for Rio Sol are grown in the north of Brazil at eight degrees latitude, way outside the normal limits for successful grape-growing. Here, in this tropical climate, the vines develop a steady stream of grapes at different times and rest at different times, but each year they crop twice.

At £4.99, this Cabernet Sauvignon/Shiraz blend is a steady seller for Waitrose, according to Nick. ‘It’s a quality wine,’ he said, but unlikely to become a bestseller since Brazil isn’t high on the average wine drinker’s radar.

However, he believes there is potential for other countries to produce double-cropping wine. ‘I reckon wines from China could easily crop twice as year, as well as India,’ he said.

For the grape-grower, having a double helping of harvests to turn into twice as much wine every year may sound wonderful, but Nick says noone has researched what effect such cropping has on the longevity of the vine. What is also unknown is whether vines could be cloned to crop twice a year, opening up the possibility of two-phase vintages in other parts of the world.