Chardonnay glass in vineyard
Food - Drink
Why Elevation Impacts The Flavor Of Wine
The climate grapes are grown in deeply influences wine made from those grapes, but elevation can make a difference as well. While grapes grown on a mountain versus at sea level don't necessarily create a wine that tastes more complex, juicy, or mineral-y than the other, it does affect those characteristics to a certain extent.
A higher elevation usually provides better airflow, which can prevent common fungal growth on grapes and reduces the chance of the fruit or vines freezing. Higher elevation also means better water drainage, and too much standing water destroys small roots and prevents nutrient intake, giving the grapes a watery, less complex flavor.
The higher a vineyard is situated, the more direct sunlight the grapes will receive with greater intensity. Since ultraviolet light is multiplied by 10% or more for every 1,000 feet above sea level, grapes at high elevations often grow thicker skins, so higher elevation definitely helps for healthier grapes that make more nuanced wines.