‘It doesn’t happen all at once,’ said the Skin Horse. ‘You become. It takes a long time.’
― Margery Williams Bianco, The Velveteen Rabbit
All good things take time. When we first planted at Hallberg Ranch, it took a few years for the vines to establish themselves and their deep roots in order to begin producing grapes. Then, when we switched to dry farming, it impacted a few harvests before the roots firmly sank their fingers into the sandy clay loam beneath the Goldridge soil for a steady, all-natural water supply.
And every year in Spring, we begin the wait for our grapes to grow and be ready to harvest. There are many milestones along the way. We watch for bud break, then flowering, then fruit set.
Now, Hallberg Ranch is flourishing with color as veraison sets in. This is the onset of ripening, when organic acidity levels lessen and natural sugar levels intensify. The grapes grow in size. Aromas and flavors, so important to winemaking further down the road, begin to develop. But the biggest and most visible change (for red grapes, at least) is when the skin on the fruit transitions from green hues to various shades of pink, then purple.
The grapes are on their way to becoming.
Back at the winery, we’re celebrating not only by preparing for harvest (with the help of our 2021 harvest interns), but by preparing for Harvest Trail 2021 and the return of Emeritus in-person events! This is a food and wine self-guided tour through the vineyard, stopping for pours of both current and library releases alongside specially paired small bites and to learn about what we do while our grapes make the journey to becoming wine.
Be sure to join us for the Harvest Trail on Saturday, September 25, at a pre-reserved time of either 11:30am, 1:30pm, or 3:30pm. Club members can receive up to 2 complimentary tickets per membership. Bring your friends!