It’s New Years in the vineyard! They’re growing! Every winter they look deader than dead and when it’s time for bud break, I always have this momentary fear: “What if they don’t wake up this time?”
But they did. First the Petit Verdot – go figure. Then the Merlot and Cabernet Franc. And now the Cabernet Sauvignon. The official kick-off of the 2007 vintage and yet another excuse to open the sparkling wine!
Our Winemaker, Geoff Gorsuch, hasn’t had the chance to pop the bubbly since he’s been up in the middle of the night twice so far to protect the tender new shoots from frost. This is when you wish you were a hillside grower! Damage begins at 32 degrees F. so wind machines, with large propellers, are used to mix the warm air above with the colder air that’s settling on the vineyard. For severe frost, we use smudge pots – some wineries call them “vineyard heaters” which burn propane to warm the vines. With any luck, we’ll start getting some much needed rain, to replenish our about 10- inch deficit and to chase away the frost. Every year tells its own story.
But these delicate, pink and green buds – that’s truly a miracle that happens right in front of our eyes every spring. It’s better than New Years, such visible signs of renewal. Makes me want to stop and think awhile – to count my blessings.
All of which reminds me – Happy Passover! Crack open a bottle made by our good friends and neighbors, Hagafen Cellars, one of the most delicious ways to keep kosher! Happy Easter! Pull the cork on a bottle of Goosecross and enjoy (we both make sparkling wine, by the way)!
Welcome, vintage 2007! Here’s to a very good year!