Wednesday, October 19, 2011

It’s mid-October and we’ve brought in just viognier, marsanne and grenache blanc. The reds are still not ready to be picked, though this week’s beautiful weather should move syrah into the harvest window.

For the last two weeks we’ve spent lots of time in the vineyard. Two weeks ago, for example, the weather forecasters were calling for rain and clouds—the perfect cocktail for botrytis bunch rot. We took preventative measures in all of our estate blocks, such as pulling leaves and making certain that clusters were not touching each other. The skies cleared up after just a night of rain and we immediately dropped those clusters that had incipient rot.

Now it’ a waiting game: Waiting for continued sugar ripening and the further advancement of all the inexplicable things that signal it’s time to pick.

The whites that are in barrel taste great. The viognier is already a new wine with a sexy nose. We picked the marsanne and grenache blanc at very low brix levels (and the grenache blanc just before a full moon—for those who pay attention to such things). The rousanne is still on the vine and could be ready by next week.

The reds are developing great flavors at low brix levels this year. We’re all anxious for the reds to turn the final corner and the sunny and warm days are making us feel hopeful.

Jeremy Weintraub, Winemaker

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