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Tannat grape composition responses to spatial variability of temperature in an Uruguay’s coastal wine region


Spatial variability of temperature was studied in relation to the berry basic composition and secondary compounds of the Tannat cultivar at harvest from vineyards located in Canelones and Montevideo, the most important wine region of Uruguay. Monitoring of berries and recording of temperature were performed in 10 commercial vineyards of Tannat situated in the southern coastal wine region of the country for three vintages (2012, 2013, and 2014). Results from a multivariate correlation analysis between berry composition and temperature over the three vintages showed that (1) Tannat responses to spatial variability of temperature were different over the vintages, (2) correlations between secondary metabolites and temperature were higher than those between primary metabolites, and (3) correlation values between berry composition and climate variables increased when ripening occurred under dry conditions (below average rainfall). For a particular studied vintage (2013), temperatures explained 82.5% of the spatial variability of the berry composition. Daily thermal amplitude was found to be the most important spatial mode of variability with lower values recorded at plots nearest to the sea and more exposed to La Plata River. The highest levels in secondary compounds were found in berries issued from plots situated as far as 18.3 km from La Plata River. The increasing knowledge of temperature spatial variability and its impact on grape berry composition contributes to providing possible issues to adapt grapevine to climate change.

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We are grateful to the following grapevine growers for providing limitless access to their vineyards (Establecimiento Juanicó, Bodega Pisano, Pizzorno Wine States, Bodega Bouza, and Bodega La Estancia). Comments and suggestions of two anonymous reviewers were also much appreciated.

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Correspondence to Mercedes Fourment.

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We declare that the experiment complies with the current laws of Uruguay. This article does not contain any studies with human participants or animals performed by any of the authors.

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The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

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Fourment, M., Ferrer, M., González-Neves, G. et al. Tannat grape composition responses to spatial variability of temperature in an Uruguay’s coastal wine region. Int J Biometeorol 61, 1617–1628 (2017).

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  • Berry composition
  • Mesoclimate
  • Tannat
  • Temperature variability
  • Grapevine