As the Soberanes Fire reaches new heights, there's a bit of good news for vineyards in the Santa Lucia Highlands.
"We had two tests from San Lucia Highlands grapes come back and show no smoke taint," said Kim Stemler with the Monterey County Vintners & Growers Association.
Over the last several weeks, smoke from the fire has blanketed many parts of the Central Coast.
"Whenever there is smoke close to grapes, that is a concern all growers have," said Stemler.
Where there is smoke there could be smoke taint. It comes when ash and smoke affect the skin of the grape, which in turn, can affect the wine.
"So we are all very excited the Salinas Valley will be protected," said Stemler.
Jason Smith, who has vineyards in Santa Lucia Highlands, said while he is pleased with the news his biggest concern isn't smoke taint. He is more worried about the people who lost their homes in the fire.
"Hopefully no one loses any more houses," said Smith. "We don't want to have smoke or ash sitting in our vineyards and on our grapes, but there is not a whole lot to do about that."
Santa Lucia Highlands vineyards might be out of the woods, but Carmel Valley received a lot more smoke.
"They may come up with smoke taint. We won't know that for a while," said Stemler. "You test before, right before harvest, and they are nowhere near harvest."
One good thing: Most of the grapes in Carmel Valley have not gone through veraison.
"Veraison is where the grapes change colors," said Stemler. "After veraison, they (the grapes) are really susceptible to smoke taint, so since it's still really early. It's a good sign."
There are also ways to fix smoke taint during the wine-making process.
"This is something California wineries have dealt with in the past, and we've found good ways to take care of that," said Smith.