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What heat spike?

September 22, 2009

This morning I checked in with Keever Vineyards to see how things were progressing. Their vineyard is nestled into the sloping western hillside just south of downtown Yountville. Jason tells me that things are progressing nicely, with good flavors developing and sugars climbing at a slow and steady rate, however they won’t likely begin their red pick for several more weeks, which is slightly later than previous years.

A little to the North and down in the silty soils of the flats, Grgich Hills Estate has begun harvesting young Cabernet. Lower elevation and different soils and winemaking styles are both factors in the much earlier pick date.

In all cases, word is that the heat spike currently underway is significantly less dramatic than originally anticipated, and the vines continue their slow and steady ripening process. The lack of intense heat, and still cool nights and mornings seem to be making this the least “hectic” pick anyone can remember in a while.

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