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Arctic wave saves Czech ice wine production

Petr David Josek / AP

Man picks grapes of Traminer from a vineyard near the village of Stosikovice na Louce, Czech Republic on Wednesday, Feb. 1, 2012.

Petr David Josek / AP

Man picks grapes of Pinot Noir from a vineyard near the village of Stosikovice na Louce, Czech Republic.

AP reports: Winemakers in southeast Czech Republic, waiting for a dip in temperatures during an unusually warm winter, finally got the deep chill they needed to harvest grapes for the most prestigious part of their business — ice wine.

When the grapes are harvested, they are immediately taken for pressing. With the water inside them frozen, the result of the pressing is a highly concentrated juice, rich in sugar and acids, which then undergoes fermentation before it becomes ice wine.

Ice wine, which is believed to have been invented by accident in Germany in the late 18th century, is made in several European countries, including Switzerland, Germany, Austria and Slovenia, in addition to Canada and the U.S. It goes well with sweet desserts.

 

Petr David Josek / AP

Workers pick grapes of Traminer from a vineyard near the village of Stosikovice na Louce, Czech Republic on Wednesday, Feb. 1, 2012.