Top 10 extraordinary vineyards

8. Olkiluoto Nuclear Power Plant, Olkiluoto, Finland

olkiluoto

Not your average location for a vineyard, the Olkiluoto power plant in Finland is home to the northernmost vineyard in the world, however its size means it does not produce anything commercially significant. Its grounds boast a tiny 0.1 hectare experimental vineyard, warmed by nuclear power, that yields 850kg of Zilga grapes annually.

The Olkiluoto Nuclear Power Plant opened in 1979 on on Olkiluoto Island, which is on the shore of the Gulf of Bothnia in the municipality of Eurajoki in western Finland. Here, temperature can plunge to -5.6C in January, rising to a moderately average 16C high in August. To overcome its climate, water heated by the reactor in the Olkiluoto nuclear power plant is used to create steam to spin the plant’s turbine-generators and cool the reactor. Much of this non-radioactive water is then pumped into the Baltic Sea, however a portion of it is pumped to the vineyard to warm the soil, tricking the vines into believing they are planted in a much warmer climate.

Native to Finland and Latvia, the short-cycle Zilga grape is bred for the colder northern European climate and is said to be able to withstand temperatures of minus 25C.

2 Responses to “Top 10 extraordinary vineyards”

  1. John says:

    I feel like I live here 24/7

  2. Silvio says:

    A via ferrata crosses the Bremer Calmont (#2). So you can have a very close look without trespassing.

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