Harvest is in Full Swing
Harvest is in full swing, you can see it, hear it, smell it, taste it and sense it. In the middle of the night the picking crews move through the vineyards with headlights like lightning bugs and close up you can see the reflection of light on the blades of the harvest knives. We picked our Sauvignon Blanc last week starting at midnight. That way the grapes are cool when you start pressing in the morning. Bringing in hot grapes in the middle of the day, maybe when it is 95F in the shade, is not a recipe for a great wine.
We have an early harvest this year, for us it is over three weeks earlier than last year so far. It is still too early to say when we are ready to start harvesting red grapes. We also have our late harvest project based on Viognier grapes which will hang much longer to be able to make sweeter “Late Harvest” wine. I am not sure when we will have the right sugar level in these grapes but it is several more weeks. We need the weather to stay dry until it is time to pick them and with an early harvest the chances are obviously better. I am so happy with the Late Harvest Viognier we made last year. It is a beautiful pale golden colored wine with 5% sugar and flavors of ripe mango, pineapple and more. It is great with almond tart, apples desserts and more. But we picked late so it was a nervous wait until we finally picked on October 31 in the early morning fog. So we shall see what happens this year with our late harvest plans.