Terroir is an odd mix of casual and difficult but much of the difficulty comes from hidden mechanics. Here’s what I learned while reviewing:
1) Don’t appear until you get your 3rd tile – which makes a forest a terrible 3rd tile. The fruit flies destroy far more than the forest gains. Stay at 2 until you build up enough money and renown to quickly upgrade your estate and get pesticides (remember you also need a worker house on an empty plot to research pesticides)
2) You can see fruit flies – I was spraying random tiles until I realized I can see where they are.
The fastest way to get renown is through the Tavern. Until you get the tavern you can speed things up by:
3) Use worse critics – if your wine is a few points off you will still get 5-stars (and renown and chance card points) with the lower level critics if you don’t mind selling the wine cheaper.
4) Bottle in batches – bottle one barrel a month before your wine’s perfect spot, then bottle the rest on time but leave a barrel for the following month. You get renown from the taste testing. This gives you 3 tastings from one batch and even though the early and late barrels are inferior they might be close enough to get 5-stars from the crappier critics.
5) Bottle indefinitely – if you manage to create a high enough tannin wine so it can sit in the barrel indefinitely (default barrels stop reducing stats at a certain point) you can keep bottling it every month for a new taste test and renown bonus.
6) Keep stock of your best wine – so you can enter it in contests (which are not limited to the current year’s production). Keep some around to enter in the “8-year old” category in the future.
Power of the Tavern
I ignored taverns as they seemed expensive but when I got one for free with a chance card I realized how important they are to build as quickly as possible because you can:
7) Sell your wine at 40% higher price – the extra margins are huge in the beginning. Taverns can only sell 240 bottles/month max but that’s enough until you get more plots of land.
8) Increase renown depending on how good the wine is – selling two 5-star wine varieties will earn you 6 renown per month, far more than you get from perfect wine tastings.
9) Don’t dump in the tavern – it might seem tempting to sell your terrible, expensive wines in your tavern. You still get high margins and don’t annoy your distributors. But bad wine sells very slowly. You want your tavern pushing maximum volume earning profits and raising renown.
Keep Distributors Happy (until you need them)
Even though you’re selling the bulk of your wine in the tavern you should still feed your suppliers and keep the relationship at 5 for the benefits.
10) Keep 30 good bottles handy – you can sell these to the distributors 1 at a time (1 bottle is enough to raise the rating) until you hit 5 and then give them another bottle when it drops to 4.
11) Dump ungodly swill in one shot – Don’t feel bad about it. The 2nd distributor is perfect as their max-rating bonus means they’ll take every bottle you have. If you’re expecting a massive, terrible batch build their rating up to 5 with one good bottle at a time, when it hits 5 dump all your poison on them. They’ll take a bit of time to sell it but that’s ok, you only want to use the 3rd distributor for actual sales (with the 10% bonus). The 2nd guy is there to move your junk. Once they’re done sell them 1 good bottle at a time until it’s back to 5 and ready for the next swill.
12) Bonuses increase margins – a perfectly bonus’d, award winning wine sold at a tavern sells 70% higher.
- each flavor profile adds 10% (these stack)
- winning an award gives 10% – hold off selling good wines until they’ve had their chance at an award then sell once they’ve won
- tavern sells at 40% higher
- only use the 3rd distributor – keep the other two happy but only move bulk (that your tavern can’t move) with the bonus
13) For the exact characteristic requirements – check Reikhardt’s table which has all the data. Just note that even if your wine is perfectly made you will lose 1/2 a star (and get wrong advice) if you:
- use the wrong color bottle (dark for red, light for white)
- use a screwtop instead of a cork
14) They’re not random – they are more like traditional campaign missions and play out the same each playthrough.
- invite the mayor as soon as possible and make sure you have some 5-star wine to serve him for $35K right when you need it most
- ignore the army request for 3000 bottles. You’ll get 10 renown points
- the pesticide experiment is not hard to deal with (causes random bursts of foliage growth) and once completed does give a lifetime immunity to vine killing pest
- to foil the counterfeiter you don’t have to ruin a whole batch. Just keep 3 barrels of good wine and let it age in the barrel until it’s bad and get the best critics to judge it for the worst score. Then bottle 1 barrel at a time to satisfy the conditions.
- From Ricardo in the comments – the next card let’s your vineyard become a national park if you own 12 forest/lake tiles. This is very good, since you will get more tourist (+400 per tavern) +10% sales and lowered taxes (although it does not say how much lower). Note, that ideally you only want forest which enhance production – lakes are not required since the pesticide experiment made your vineyards immune (they will still die now and then) but it’s a small cost.
Storing bottles can become an issue even with the highest estate level. Massive harvests and waiting for awards can fill up your cellar.
15) Research white barrels – (or produce high tannin wine) so wine can sit in the barrel indefinitely. Just bottle as you need.
Sometimes harvesting at 7 is better than 6. While 6 gives the vintage bonus (+1 star if below 3.5) that’s not needed because your wine will be perfect anyway. Harvesting at 7 will give you high tannin which lets you:
16) Keep your wine in the barrels longer – increasing the chance of developing a special flavor and letting you rebottle the same batch over and over for the renown bonus.
17) Have a chance of developing every month – the wine sits in the barrel. White oak is best for this purpose as your wine never goes below the ideal tannin and acidity levels.
Avoid Silly Bankruptcy
18 ) Don’t go in the red – even if you have 100 renown and can borrow $300K or have massive wine stocks the game will bankrupt you without warning if you stay in the negatives.
That’s all I got. If I made an error or you have other tips please share them in the comments and I’ll update.
Bonus Tips from readers
From – |TeM| Reikhardt:
19) My personal extra tip is to only use one varietal until you unlock white oak barrels, it’s so much easier to juggle just one wine on a year with bad weather in the early game.
From – Ricardo (also #14)
20) I usually get 2 forest and 4 tiles for wine (all in the same type) and save up to 300k. Buy Tavern. If you managed that, then you can start doing whatever you want. This should take you anything from 3 to 8 years (depends greatly on how the weather was)