The influence of different soils on wine: Granite

One of the important factors of the terroir is the soil where the vine is planted. The type of soil where the roots grow, absorb nutrients and absorb solar radiation, which results in different wine profiles. We therefore think it’s interesting to share information about it. We’ll begin by explaining some typical properties and factors that influence a wine when vines are planted in granite soils.

Gredos 1

Granite is an igneous crystalline rock that was formed far below the surface, under extreme heat and pressure conditions. These fusions combined different compounds such as quartz and mica that were driven upwards to the surface of the earth. Over time some of these rocks have been eroded, generating the sandy granitic soils where most of the vines are planted today.

The main Spanish wine regions that have this type of soil are: Arribes, Rías Baixas, Ribeiro, Valdeorras, Bierzo, Sierra de Gredos and Alella.

This type of soil is loose and with a sandy-loam texture, i.e. with a minimum percentage of clay and large amounts of silt and sand. This translates into a medium permeability to water and consequently a low retention of water and nutrients.

In contrast, this type of soil radiates a lot of heat during the day and cools down faster at night. This makes it possible for the grape to obtain the maximum amount of sugars during the day, and at night, with the drop in soil temperature, to preserve its acidity.

With these two important variables we can define a common wine profile for this type of soil. It is perfect for white wines, since they preserve their acidity very well, and it rounds them off, giving rise to wines that are more floral with a long finish, and with a salty end taste. The Rías Baixas such as Cíes or Zárate express this profile perfectly.

In reds this acidity leads to fresher, lighter and more vibrant wines. In this case, the clearest example is the area of ​​Gredos and its Garnachas, floral, flagrant and intense.

In short, the wines from this type of soil are vibrant and exciting. A wine profile suitable for people who like strong emotions and feeling the intensity of the soil.

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