The 2019 vintage reminded us that fundamentally we are farmers who are in the hands of Mother Nature. This growing season and vintage has been one of the steepest learning curves our family has experienced. We were faced with new challenges and through these experiences, we have come out much better and wiser.We ventured into some unfamiliar territories, with quite different experiences and therefore lots of thorough testing. The resultant fruit quality was brilliant, even with the extremely low rainfalls during the growing season. Our grapes ended up delivering intense flavour profiles and tannin structure and we are seeing this flowing nicely through to the wines that have been placed into barrel.The lower rainfalls meant we witnessed more wildlife in the vineyard than we have ever seen before. They were searching for water and of course our grapes were a key source of this. With an appreciation that these animals required a source of water and food, we came to a decision to sacrifice a part of the vineyard, where the wildlife could gather and we would not try and scare them away. This proved to be a blessing in some ways, as it concentrated the wildlife to one section of the vineyard during the harvest period and retained our fruit quality through the rest.I actually feel as though we went through an intensive boot camp over the last 8 months. It was a huge learning curve, but we are now super ready and resourced to take on anything in future growing and vintage seasons.
I feel that this may be one of the most important tasks we can do in the vineyard in a season.
Prior to starting our pruning we look back at:
-The wines we produced the vintage prior and if there is anything we can improve via pruning.
This could be by pruning the vine in a way that leaves less shoots and hence less grapes that a vine will produce so that the vine is not over stressed during the growing period.
– The amount of rain and days over 30 degrees we had in the past vintage
We look at this to understand the possible trends of rainfall over the up coming months and how possibly the vine will react to these dry and hot spells.
We are heading into December and the majority of the vineyard is completing the process of flowering whereby tiny grapes are now being formed.
It is always important that during this short period of time where the flowering is occurring that the weather is not too severe.
In saying this we have had some of the warmest days for some time along with some amazing rain events though
With the temperatures in the soil and the vineyard warming we are now starting to see evidence of the new growth appearing from our vines. This then is the start of another growing season and another vintage to learn more. We have had wonderful rain in August even better than the figures from August 2016. Our soils appear to have been adequately watered awaiting the summer to come.
Now that all the leaves have naturally fallen from the dormant vines, we are commencing to prune the vineyard. This is a very labor intensive process and requires a good understanding of the different pruning techniques that have been predominantly unchanged for decades. These techniques are usually founded on the variety and how healthy the
Our family would like to thank those who took time out of their weekend to get a glimpse into our vineyard and winery as part of our 2017 Harvest Lunch.
It was very special to see lots of families enjoying them selves and for us it was wonderful to meet new people who were local or from afar.
With a wonderful growing season that commenced with good rainfalls during June – August 2016 when the vines were dormant, then with a mild growing season from September when bud burst began through to the last day of harvesting in late April 2017 we are happy to see all wines now in barrels commencing their maturation.
We have commenced the 2017 harvest of our grapes across the vineyard. The cooler ripening conditions we have had leading up to this 2017 vintage have been ideal where we commenced picking Pinot and Chardonnay mid March and are still continuing through out April with Fiano, Shiraz, Sangiovese and Nebiollo.