Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Vilafonte Harvest Tues Feb 21 - day 17

Harvest Decisions and Harvest Pace
I am out in the vineyard early to see how the Cabernet Franc, and block E Merlot, are doing. We checked them Saturday; they seemed "nearly ripe"; and I want to see if we want to bring them in this week, and how they look after the rain. Julie is sampling each of them, to check phenolics (color and tannin) and Brix, acid and pH. I will pool our observations (of seed color, ripe flavors, skin texture, etc) with the chemistry and decide about harvest later this week. For the time being, I have put off our Wednesday harvest to Thursday; due to Monday rain. But all Cab Franc seeds are brown; I think this block is ready to come off; and by the appearances of the Merlot it should be ready by Friday.
Today is clear and sunny; last night was chilly; this morning we had a steady breeze which was GREAT!!! ...dried off the leaves and clusters. This is just lovely ripening weather for the Cabernets that are coming up. As you can tell if you've been following us; pace of harvest has been slow and steady. Measured, if you will … time to consider each detail with each vineyard as it comes to the winery. Ideal. Almost too good to be true…but it is early days yet.
Zelma Long

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