As of Wednesday, September 8, we’ve brought in roughly 145 tons of gorgeous looking and tasting grapes from Hallberg Ranch. In fact, we only have a few more blocks to pick at this vineyard. We should be finished harvesting Hallberg Ranch this Friday, then we’ll turn our energy to Pinot Hill.
An abundance of cold nights and foggy afternoons have led to the wines’ acidity levels being higher than in previous years. Our winemaker David says he’s never seen a more uniformly perfect juice and wine chemistry. The clusters and berries are also are much smaller overall than in years past. This means that we can look forward to a 2021 vintage of dark and intensely flavored wines.
On Saturday we’ll start picking at Pinot Hill. It’s been even cooler down there throughout the growing season, so the grapes ripened later than at Hallberg Ranch. Even at lower sugars than Hallberg, the Pinot Hill fruit is loaded with character.
In the cellar, we’ve entered that part of harvest where our winemaking team is tending the multiple simultaneous operations during the day. This includes receiving fruit in the early morning, putting Blanc down to barrel, bleeding certain tanks for Ruby, and managing the dozen or so fermenting tanks at a time. We’re also draining, pressing, and barreling down a lot of finished Pinot. It’s tough work (who needs a gym membership with all of this going on, right?), but it helps to know we’re making some of the most exciting wines to come from our vineyards in years. Our daily playlist helps too!