Yesterday on September 14 our 2017 harvest started with one ton of Certified Sustainable Sangiovese grapes from Arbor Vineyards. This has been an interesting post-veraison period where we've had many above 100 degree days. When it gets this hot the vines often 'shut down' where the vines don't evapotransiprate and grapes don't increase in sugar. However if it's humid, which it has been, then mildew-prone grapes can get mildew/botrytis/bunch rot, and given the heat, the white grapes can sunburn. It's a bit of a stroke of luck that this vintage we are bringing in late-season reds, so now that we've exited the 100's and have launched into fall weather in the low 80's, our grapes will have the luxury of slowly reaching ripeness as we space out harvest and press days.
Those are my observations about this harvest season until this moment - now to the Sangiovese! These Certified Sustainable hand-picked grapes grown by Larry Mettler of Arbor Vineyards (and Mettler Family Vineyards) look gorgeous - great flavors, thick skins, and characteristic acidity. They came in at a hearty 27.5 degrees Brix. The day after crushing I drew off 10 gallons of juice to make a little rosé. The day of soaking will give it a little color and flavor from the skins.
Please enjoy the pictures and we are certainly open during harvest. We are happy to show people the winemaking and if you'd like to do a punchdown, now's your chance!