Vendange 2013 Approacheth

September 4, 2013 § Leave a comment

September 4th, 2013

Although it’s felt like harvest for the past two weeks – walking to work in the morning with dew on the grass and temperatures in the upper 50s always gives me visceral harvest nostalgia – we have not yet started picking.  August has been a refreshing antidote to a relatively wet and vigorous summer, and the surprisingly cool evenings have allowed for some nice, slow ripening, as well as the retention of acids in our whites.  While the main story in our area thus far has been issues with downy mildew due to wetness through the summer, we’ve been fortunate to avoid any significant problems, and are poised to enter this final stage of ripening in good form.

Juice samples patiently awaiting TA analysis.

Juice samples patiently awaiting TA analysis.

Our late bud break, coupled with the cool august, has pushed harvest to the late end of the spectrum.  For example, our ripeness levels suggest that on average we’re about 10-14 days behind last year.  This isn’t a bad thing, though, especially for our early and mid-season ripeners.  Time will tell with grapes like Cab Sauv, which require the most growing degree days of anything we grow, and therefore might not benefit well from the delayed season.  But there’s still a lot of time (and weather) – so we’ll just have to wait and see.

As it stands, we’re looking at bringing in some early blocks next week.  But we’ll wait and see how things ripen through this coming weekend before making any solid decisions.  That press is getting impatient!

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