More Heat Could Mean Bigger Buzz from Your Glass of Wine

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If you’ve been wilting the the summer heat, you aren’t alone; it’s not exactly a picnic for our tasty friends on the vine, either.

“Typically, when it starts breaking 100, 101, the grapes actually shut down,” Kevin Phillips, with the Michael David Winery in Lodi, said Tuesday. “[The heat] will halt the ripening.”

That means lots of TLC and water during the hot growing season, and potential cork-popping fun further down the line. Phillips says excessive heat would quickly increase the sugars in in grapes, which could mean … Wait for it…

“[It would] in turn increase the alcohols,” Phillips told FOX40.

So the alcohol content of your bottle of vino from 2013 could jump from 14 to 16 percent.

“More bang for your buck,” as Phillips put it.

Winemakers like Phillips aim for balance in their bottles, and not just a strong buzz. They can control the grapes’ ripening, unless the heat hits a month or so from now – during harvest.

“If you’re mid-90s and you hit 105, you know they move quick and sometimes the sugar moves ahead of the actual ripeness,” Phillips said.

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