Shouldered Cluster

Definition - What does Shouldered Cluster mean?

The shape of a grape cluster varies with each variety. The name and classification of each depend on the number of lateral branches and their length on the cluster stem. A shouldered cluster is a bunch of grapes which form a main, upside-down conical cluster with what looks like "shoulders" on the top side(s) of the bunch.

WineFrog explains Shouldered Cluster

There are many names by which vintners call the shape of the grape clusters according to how the berries form and are carried on the cluster stems. Shouldered clusters form long, conical shapes in which two shoulder-like shapes form on either side of the cone. Some, however, will only have one shoulder.

Some familiar varietals with shouldered clusters:

  • Cabernet Franc
  • Cabernet Sauvignon
  • Merlot
  • Sangiovese
  • Chardonnay
  • Viognier

Other official bunch classification names:

  • short conical
  • long conical
  • cylindrical
  • cylindrical and winged
  • winged, double cluster
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