|Thursday May 10, 2001
I have said many, many times before: selling FUTURES is a great deal of trouble. I do it because I want to keep my prices down, but after a day like this, I should reconsider. There are many benefits in selling "futures" (wine that is still in the barrel and thus will be bottled and released at a future date), but the main problem is that customers do not pickup their wine on a timely fashion. Today Pat and I went through a list of customers who have failed to pickup their 1999 wines even though the deadline was April 30. Many of these people were on our list last year and the year before. I am sure they have excuses, but they don't know how much trouble it is for us. Pat and I spent all day preparing a special mailing to all our customers who have failed to pickup their 1999 wine. Next year we are planing to charge a fee for our efforts.
I don't have any time to deal with these customers because we have been racking and blending our 2000 wines again. Each year we rack (aerate) our wine three times. This action blends and also exposes the wine to air in order to prepare for ultimate bottling. Most wineries bottle later than our July date and thus may rack 4 or more times. This week we even made some minor adjustments to our final blends. I have said I am concerned about the final blend of ZP2C (everything left over at the end). This wine in the last few years has been one of my favorites. Even though we sell this wine at a lower price I want to make sure the quality is up to my standards (concentrated and complex). When we rack, and since we do not filter or fine, there is about 3 gallons of slightly cloudy wine in the bottom of each barrel. That wine is used for ZP2C. The wine does clear up after a couple of months (leaving another layer of sediment). Since I have been unimpressed with our experiment of filtering the sediment from our first racking, I have decided to never filter again. This wine was to be the start of our new 2000 ZP2C.
This week we have saved a good deal of clear wine from all of our barrels for the start of the ultimate blend of ZP2C. Those of you who come by may taste that wine. We have added a small amount of the filtered wine and will also add some of the settled wine from all barrels racked this week. Since we have saved a greater amount of wine from all our barrels for ZP2C, we will have less wine to sell of the planned types of wine we have been selling for over 6 months. I am determined to make ZP2C into a wine I can be proud of.
This week every day has been in the 90's with three days over 100. Next
week I will talk more about the potenial crop for our 2001 wines and our
new revised case totals for 2000.
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