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Saturday, October 18, 2008

Two things that don't go great together

Ah, the whole family picking olives, what a great way to spend quality time together. This has been a very odd year. Our grapes are slow, Sonoma and Napa were claiming super early. Guys a mile away have already picked their Cabernet and our undercropped Barbera still isn't ready. But, the olives are! About two weeks early too. The walnuts fell five days ago, and they usually follow our Aglianico after November first. Oh well, it is actually slotting in nicely.
On the wine front, we pressed the Dolcetto today: stats are about 9 1/2 barrels, sitting at 3.6 pH (they are low on malic acid so probably will stay just below 3.7 pH), dead on 13.9% alcohol, 15-day maceration (4 day soak)and pressed at about 3% residual sugar to finish up. It looks great, not super complex (it never is) but a very nice rich fruit blast with some chocolate and almonds, and good grippy tannins that make your mouth water and want more of that ragu. We are feeling pretty good about it. The Primitivo is also at about 3% sugar and again showing that it is way more delicate than a big burly Zin. The Primi is always the nail biter, tending to go wildly in many directions, making decisions like pressing very difficult. 2005 went Zin-style. 2007 has become a bit lighter in body but darker in flavor, almost Burgundian with dark back-palate and black cherry up front with real fine structure (this one should turn out real good folks). When we figure out where it wants to go, this time, we'll let you know. Oh yeah, Sangiovese is underway too. Weather forecast is good for another 10 days, and we are barely half through with our Barbera (some for rose), our Aglianico, and the big daddy Nebbiolo a mile down the road still hanging.

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