Freezing temperatures benefit Michigan ice wine harvest

TRAVERSE CITY, Mich. (WPBN) — While many people prefer to stay inside during the cold weather, the icy temperatures are a perk for northern Michigan winemakers.

Old mission winery Chateau Chantal picked their frozen grapes this morning to make their seasonal ice wine.

“You do have to wait for those ideal temperatures and when they are ready you have to go out there no matter how cold and pick them up while you can,” said Marie-Chantal Dalese, Chateau Chantal CEO.

For winemakers at Chateau Chantal in Traverse City working in cold weather is what it takes to be one of the only wineries in the world that can make ice wine, so when winemakers saw the temperature was below 13 degrees this week, they jumped at the opportunity.

By the end of the morning, winemakers picked more than 650 pounds of frozen grapes.

Winemakers say ice wine grapes are naturally sweeter because all of the grape’s water is frozen causing the grape to have a higher concentration of sugar.

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