|Tuesday September 12, 2006
This a quick note to let you know that we have decided to harvest all of our Sauv Blanc tomorrow. Instead of producing a sweet Late Harvest Sauv Blanc this year (We have some left over from last year) I plan to make a cold fermented dry Sauv Blanc. I'll have more details tomorrow.
You might have noticed that we reached 99 degrees yesterday and 105 degrees today. It is forecasted to be real cold over the weekend so we have decided to harvest some Zinfandel Thursday. Again I will have more details tomorrow.
Wednesday September 13, 2006
Catarino and his friends just picked 1752 pounds of Sauv Blanc grapes from our vineyard. There will be no Late Harvest produced this year. This fruit should produce approximately 50 cases of Estate Sauv Blanc. We are about to whole cluster press and I hope to obtain about 140 gallons. The juice will go into 16 gallon stainless kegs which have been placed into our tank that will be chilled down to 58 degrees. The Fermentation should stay at about 60 degrees until dry. At that time we will chill the whole mass down to 29 degrees for about 4 days. I will either filter or fine to achieve clarity. We will ferment the Chardonnay fruit from Bennett Valley the same way when it is ready in a few weeks.
Tomorrow we will harvest one bin (Half Ton) of zinfandel from our third block old vines. We will have Catarino and his two helpers look at the bunches on the vines and select ripe looking ones and leave bunches with red berries. They will probably end up leaving about one quarter of fruit on the vine to be picked in a couple of weeks. If the first bin turns out to be low sugar I will have them stop. If the sugar comes in at 23.5 to 24.5 brix as I suspect they will end up picking about 8 tons by next Tuesday. By then the first block Peloursin should be ready.
We checked out new Cabernet yesterday and that reading was 22 brix. The RR Pinot is at 23 and the Trieb Cab is at 24. We should be harvesting next week.
3:30Pm: We just finished pressing whole bunches of our Sauv Blanc. We ended up with about 135 gallons. That hopefully will give us two barrels and 47 cases of finished wine. You can now purchase this wine for $14 and $12 for the Vintage Circle.
Here are pictures from the first day of Harvest.
Friday September 14, 2006
We did harvest old vine Zinfandel today. Catarino and his two helpers picked selectively 3 tons from our 3rd block. We left about 25% on the vine because it was not ripe enough yet. It is great to have the luxury of Catarino to pick slowly and look for red bunches. Zinfandel ripens very unevenly but especially this year. It will be interesting to see what the quality is. I will have an idea within two weeks. One section of the 3rd block was less ripe than the other so we stopped picking for this week. 3 tons is a good start and we are happy to be fermenting again. The overall sugar turned out to be 24 Brix and the PH was 3.4, perfect for both. Tomorrow morning I will see how much the sugar goes up after swelling up the Zinfandel raisins.
Thursday September 21, 2006
I can never get ready for it.........The Harvest. All of a sudden yesterday hit me hot and heavy. First of all my 2nd daughter, Susie 18 years old left with Pat for Washington, that is UW. She starts her first quarter next week. Then we received 14 tons of grapes!! And today we got another 5. There are a lot of grapes nearly ready out there and I am running out of room to ferment. I will free up three fermenters tomorrow when we press our first Zin. I will then have room for Price Family Zin Monday and I will bring in most of our Block 4 in the next few days. The rest will have to wait until next week when we can press again.
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