Our Harvest Calendar tells the story. September brought us a few blasts of heat and the grapes came rolling in at a fairly rapid fire. The bad news: It’s exhausting to have so many burners going at once. The good news: A lot of the really hard work is behind us, now, so we begin to see the light at the end of the tunnel.
So, how’s it going? Of course, you expect me to say it’s going great, so I’ll be pleased to oblige! After the roller coaster that was 2008, this has been a beautiful growing season.
Number one, flavors are right where I want them. Beautiful balance, great flavor intensity.
Number two, yields are nice and normal. In some cases, like our Cabernet Franc, even generous! That’s a relief, although not surprising. When the vines pull back one year they often pour it on in the next.
As we reported, at the end of August, we started our harvest significantly later than we did in 2008. Aside from a few heat blasts along the way, this has been a decidedly cool growing season. Some wineries are still quite a bit behind schedule, but we’ve caught up nicely, thanks to that warm September. Early isn’t the best, in most cases, because it may mean inadequate “hang time” in terms of flavor maturity, unless the whole season was early. Late is a little scary because we can run into rain. A little rain doesn’t much matter, but heavy rainfall can cause rot, mildew, dilution… Some varieties are more susceptible than others.
So, we’ve got Petit Verdot – all three rows of it coming in Sunday and Syrah, probably, next week and we’re home free! Let’s hope Mother Nature continues to smile on us! Cheers!