Dry Farm Wine
The term Dry Farm Wine has gotten a lot of buzz lately, and we’ve got several producers in climates where dry farming is both feasible and desirable. The definition of a “dry farmer” is one who never irrigates his vines, no matter the conditions. Dry farming techniques can result in lower overall yield, but grapes that have less concentrated sugar and produce “drier” wines.
Proponents of dry farm wines believe that it’s the soil’s job to provide adequate moisture to sustain the vines and allow grapes to thrive in a non-irrigated vineyard. Some believe that irrigation prevents the best expression of the grape. When vines have to struggle for moisture, they often grow much deeper and stronger roots, which many believe results in superior grapes, especially when combined with organic and Biodynamic production methods.
Dry Farm Wine Not Possible in All Regions
Some regions of the world lend themselves to dry farm wine more than others. These regions naturally receive enough moisture through rain and snow throughout the year. In many, more arid regions of Europe and South America, our winery partners have found it to be impossible to farm without irrigation. There is much experimentation being conducted by our partners in both Europe and South America, and the resulting innovative wines will eventually come to market. In the meantime, we have four winery partners who regularly produce Dry Farm Wine.
Our Dry Farm Wine Producers
In Austria, the Demeter Biodynamic regulations call for non-irrigation, with only rescue irrigation when absolutely required. Biokult explains that they have only had to ask for exceptions 2 or 3 times in the past ten years, with the last 3 vintages using absolutely no irrigation for their Dry Farm Wine.
Maison Raymond, France
The classic maritime climate of Maison Raymond in the heart of the Entre-Deux-Mers region of Bordeaux lends itself perfectly to produce organic Dry Farm Wines. In France, natural rainfall is considered the only source of water and has been irrigation historically banned in order to maintain the terroir expression. The different properties of the domaine benefit from specific conditions: special orientation of the vineyards, composition of the soil, humidity, age of the vines.
Domaine Gioulis, Greece
Situated in the province of Corinth, close to the valley of Nemea on the Peloponnese peninsula, Domaine Gioulis produces Sofos Greek wines. The climate in Klimenti is semi-continental with heavy winters and cool summers which favors the application of organic farming. In particular, during the growth season, the climate is sunny with adequate rainfall and cool northerly winds, thereby contributing to the absence of insects and the reduced diseases, without the need for irrigation.
Fattoria di Romignano, Italy
Tuscany receives an average of 8 inches (200 mm) of rainfall during the months of April through June the period that includes flowering and fruit set, when the water is most crucial. The amount of precipitation and the natural ability of the soil (clay mixed with sand) to hold water provides adequate moisture for a successful and healthy harvest for the Dry Farm Wine Chianti of Fattoria di Romignano.
Top 8 Dry Farm Wines Worth Trying
All of our Dry Farm Wines are available at fine retailers and restaurants nationwide.
Video - What is Dry Farm Wine?