Definition of terroir in US English:



  • 1The complete natural environment in which a particular wine is produced, including factors such as the soil, topography, and climate.

    • ‘Because the winemaker can have such a strong influence it is often technique that defines the flavors of Chardonnay wines more than terroir.’
    • ‘The real joy comes when both food and wine are of the same region, or terroir, so that you are eating as locally as you are drinking.’
    • ‘‘It's a surprisingly good vintage,’ Drouhin said, ‘and the wines reflect their terroir.’’
    • ‘Good terroir encourages optimum fruit maturity and stamps the wine with its unique character.’
    • ‘For any existing and potential grape grower, vineyard site selection, or choosing the best terroir, is the single most important decision to be made.’
    • ‘Oui, French wines are all about terroir - that slippery concept that ties the character of every wine to the unique soil, climate, exposure, rainfall and drainage of the respective wine's vineyard.’
    • ‘We like these wines to represent their terroir, their soil, their vineyard.’
    • ‘Phelps Creek wines are characterized by the intense purity of their sweet bing-cherry fruit and the clear mineral notes from the vineyard terroir.’
    • ‘‘The terroir really makes a difference in tequila,’ he said.’
    • ‘The winery produces award-winning Chardonnays and Cabernet Sauvignons that burst with the powerful flavors of the terroir.’
    • ‘‘I believe, I know, that we have not even begun to exploit the wonderful diversity of terroir and climates that we have in South Africa,’ said Arnold.’
    • ‘Blessed with excellent terroir and fine chateaux, this could be the area that can push fine Bordeaux onto the table of more Americans.’
    • ‘While there will always be some disagreement over which aspects of the terroir are most influential, it is clear that the prudent grape grower must understand their interactions and controls on grape growth and quality.’
    • ‘The differences in flavors and aromas come from fermentation times and methods, additives, terroir, climate, handling and quality of pick.’
    • ‘Literal-minded fundamentalists love to call terroir the soil and climate of a specific vineyard, but in truth it's about husbandry, about sensitivity to place and its careful management so that the best of things can be delivered of it.’
    • ‘Merlot is one grape that produces dramatically different bouquets, depending on the geographic location and quality of the terroir.’
    • ‘What about all those generations of wizened peasants treading the grapes and passing on their age-old knowledge of the terroir?’
    • ‘This lowly-ranked wine still retains the terroir of the region, of the Les Setilles vineyard and of Oliver Leflaive, the winemaker.’
    • ‘People will soon be talking more about the typicity and terroir of Australia's winemaking regions.’
    • ‘It is grown in every wine region, bending as much to the wills of the viticulturists and wine-makers as to the influence of climate and terroir.’
    1. 1.1 The characteristic taste and flavor imparted to a wine by the environment in which it is produced.
      • ‘If taken to its extreme, these statistics explode the notion of terroir, as the characteristics of the wine depend not on the unique conditions in which it is grown but on a ubiquitous mixture of artificial additives.’
      • ‘‘I like wines that speak of terroir, that are not over-oaked,’ is how he describes his taste.’
      • ‘‘The terroir is exceptional,’ says a smiling Durham.’
      • ‘Guffens makes more than 50 wines, and while the quality is high, they do taste different because he manages to extract as much terroir as possible from each batch.’
      • ‘On the other hand, terroir is of little or no importance to the casual wine drinker.’
      • ‘The very best Sauvignon Blanc from New Zealand provides an extra layer of flavour, achieved mostly from the high-quality terroir and the few bunches of Semillon grapes, or the use of oak in the fermentation and maturation processes.’
      • ‘The French would attribute this difference to what they call terroir, the taste of soil and climate that varies from place to place, and Allied Domecq Wines New Zealand has decided to make something of that difference.’
      • ‘The more Argyle wine I drink, the more I learn to appreciate its subtlety and character, the differences and similarities from vintage to vintage, and its terroir.’
      • ‘In other words, we obtained a more elegant wine, without losing the terroir that we consider very important.’
      • ‘Sometimes terroir and varietal character win over technique.’
      • ‘Try rounding up a few friends for a blind test, and see if you, too, can taste the terroir.’
      • ‘Terroir and economics have never seemed at odds to me: the more precious the terroir, the more precious the price of the bottle!’
      • ‘When British consumers pay more than £10 a bottle they expect individual and satisfying lateral flavour, with passion, terroir and artistry.’


French, ‘land’, from medieval Latin terratorium.