Monday, September 8, 2008

Reporting from all precincts ...

I sent a scattershot note to a group of regional wineries asking if Saturday’s tropical storm had any effects on their harvest. What follows if their replies. And, as always, my public thanks to everyone who responded.

Jerry Forest,
Buckingham Valley Vineyards: No serious issues in Buckingham. We harvested 15 tons of Cayuga on Friday before the pending storm; clean fruit, good sugar, Ph and acid. We mechanically harvest, so we can pick 6+ tons per hour day or night with one person. It’s great for bringing in the crop before a storm. We got 4” of rain on Saturday, but no high winds, and great drying on Sunday. We netted some reds today (to hang for 2+ more weeks), and plan to pick Chancellor tomorrow morning. All varieties are doing well and ripening somewhat earlier than normal this year. Overall, another great harvest! Thanks for asking.

Brad Knapp,
Pinnacle Ridge: We harvested Cayuga for our sparling Blanc de Blanc on Friday in order to beat the rain. Cayua have a tendency to split when they get rained on at harvest so we wanted to avoid that situation if possible. We got 2.25" (could have been worse) and things look reasonable. We will be picking Chardonnay and Pinot Noir for sparkling wines this week.Vickie Greff, Blue Mountain Vineyards: Thank you for the contact regarding our harvest. Fortunately we did not plan to harvest this past weekend so the weather was not a factor. Although it did put a damper on our Annual Adopt a Vine Ceremony, which took place on Saturday, September 6th. We still gave out the plaques, however the adoptive parents were not able to go into the vineyard to place their plaques on the vines. They took a rain check for next year's Ceremony. Regardless of weather we still had a wine tasting accompanied by snacks and our seasoned parents were given their commemorative bottle of wine! We will most likely begin our harvest next week, of course weather permitting. Due to the predominately dry summer it looks to be a great harvest. We did need the rain this past weekend, but we are hoping for very little rain during harvest and a long lasting warm fall.

Carole Kirkpatrick,
Kreutz Creek Vineyards: We had no problems from the storm, we did not yet start harvesting.

Anthony Vietri,
Va La Vineyards: All is well here. Par for the course and all. I try not to get either too anxious or too excited; it just all plays out the way it's going to play out, and all I can do is applaud.

Carl Helrich,
Allegro Vineyards: I haven't started picking yet, so, yes [we got through it OK]! We'll start this week with some hybrids. Chard will be toward the end of the month along with Merlot. Cab and Riesling in October.

Morris Zwick,
TerrapinStationWinery: We got through OK. We picked second block of Cayuga on Friday instead of Saturday [obviously[ as it was ripe and ready to go. Everything else seems unaffected. We already had some downy mildew problems in one field, so the storm did not help that, but we put a spray down and should be able to manage it. We are likely to pick our Traminette this weekend since it was fairly close last week and the weather looks favorable for some catch up ripening.

Jason Price, Twin Brook Winery: Yes we made it out okay. We were concerned some of the hybrids might swell and burst. Biggest annoyance was crushing in the rain. We crushed and pressed 3 tons of Cayuga Saturday morning. tried to hurry and get the grapes in the press before the heavy rains started. Almost made it. Made clean up a whole lot easier.

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