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Friday, October 10, 2008

Fire up the wind machine... (again)...


The picture has nothing to do with this post. It is just a reminder that winery dogs are dumb and pedestrian. Winery cats (like squids here) eats everything from bugs to lizards to gophers, requires little attention (an occasional brushing), and doesn't ever smell like a wet dog. Anyway, things are getting a little tense here. Possible frost the next two nights, and we are still waiting on most of our crop. Flavors have almost hit a dead stop, and what was supposedly an early season is starting to look typically late. Tomorrow I will start selectively picking the Primitivo, a few days earlier than we would like based on flavors, but sugars are soaring, acid is dropping, and weather is iffy. Right now the berries are very hazelnut and delicate-floral heavy, no raspberry jam and black pepper Zinfandel flavors in sight, even if the clusters (pictured last post) look the same.
Next week we should have Sangiovese and the Primi fermenting away. Barbera, Aglianico, and Nebbiolo are two weeks away at least. We are low alcohol/low oak and don't want to pick over 25 brix as a general rule, and this causes some anxious nail biting as October wears on. Our frost damage was minor compared to some. But the bit of rain and near-freezing nights slow everything to a crawl. Not to mention that we can't heat our outdoor fermentation tanks, and the Dolcetto is still below 70 degrees; a whole other anxiety issue. It will all work out as it always does, but it won't be easy. In addition our light olive crop will be ready next week possible. Hopefully we can get a half-ton together, the minimum to make pressing worth it. The arbequinas we might just cure ourselves, hopefully to be eaten in a future, food serving tasting room on a charcuterie plate. Keep your fingers crossed.

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