Fruit from Devoto gorgeous this year, not much sorted away at all. I was the first to pick at both Devoto and Inspiration, am happy to get off the vine before the warm weekend where this younger fruit would have no doubt experienced some dehydration. Still four more tons to pick from the more mature, less ripe Pinot block, which I’m putting at about two weeks away? Yours truly, using dry ice aplenty this year; adopting more reductive techniques last year I think gave a nice dimension to my 2012s (not released yet :). For these younger blocks I’m including about 10-15% stems in the cold maceration and ferment. Will let this rest at about 50 degrees until next week when I’ll warm it up and let the native yeasts do their thing. First step was to get them into the harvest bin. Now, how can I get them to start cleaning them…
Came up quick this year, made the call on Monday to pick 3 tons yesterday: a ton of Chardonnay from Inspiration Vineyard (below where I dropped my harvest bins), and, surprisingly, two tons of Pinot Noir from Devoto Gardens, where the younger blocks got ripe fast
Our 2012 Russian River Chardonnay was released this month, and wine club members who have chosen our Summer Whites option were the first to receive it. 2012 was a beautiful growing year, and this graceful un-oaked Chardonnay is a nice reflection: it is bursting with flavor and mouth-watering acids, but comes in at a very old-world 12.8% ABV, so it’s easy to enjoy. We made only a small amount and are assembling our allocation list now. The wine retails at $24/bottle, but folks may join our wine club now and receive two bottles for just $30 plus tax and shipping (or, use our free pickup option). Club members may also re-order limited amounts at 20% discount, or just $19.20/bottle. Happy end of summer!
Harvest approaches and our fruit is ahead of where it was in 2012, due to the warm dry winter and spring. Our growers (Stan at Devoto Gardens for our Pinot Noir, and Jon at Inspiration Vineyard for our Chardonnay) scrambled to irrigate during mid July heat that reached the 90s. But it has since cooled off and things are slowing; we’ll see what September brings! Devoto Gardens: clone 667 at left (planted 2009), clone 828 at right (planted 2006). Note characteristic verticality of the 828. Veraison at about 70-80% in the 667 block (and the 115 block, also a young canopy) two weeks back; not as far along in the 828. Exposed (southern) side of the Chardonnay at Inspiration, carrying more protective leaves. Quadrilateral training, harder to stay on top of what’s going on inside the canopy, but Jon has rot and mildew well in check. Putting veraison at 70% as of two weeks back. Will be asking Jon to drop fruit on these shorter shoots, which is unlikely to fully ripen.