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Harvest Notes 2009 & 2010

Observations from the field...

The last two vintages, 2009 & 2010, have been challenging for the late ripening varieties like Cabernet. Unsettled weather conditions often dictated when picking had to occur. Fall weather patterns came early and forced our hand when it came time to bring in the grapes. Last year, when friends asked, “How are the grapes” I would respond “How are your tomatoes?” If you grew tomatoes last summer, you know that they ripened late and were not as plentiful as normal. It was simply a very cool growing season all the way around. Early on, in 2010, we could see that below seasonal temperature patterns were going to characterize the entire season. As such we adjusted some of our cultural practices in the field to help maximize fruit development. We thinned clusters judiciously, and removed leaves and some of the lateral growth to give the grapes the ideal level of sun flecks and shade. One enormous heat wave of 113 degrees plagued us for a two day period, causing some minor level of sunburn on exposed clusters. Fortunately, we could turn on our sprinkler system and keep temperatures in the vineyard below damaging levels.

Harvest was somewhat compressed, between waiting for optimal flavor development and senescence* of the vine canopy in advance of the dormant period. With careful planning and daily monitoring of flavors we selected, block by block, the best order in which to harvest various varietals and clonal selections that make up the Round Pond Estate’s wines. In a team effort we successfully took the very best of what the season had to offer.
*Senescence is the point in the growing season when the leaves start to turn color & lose the ability to generate carbohydrates from Chlorophyll.


- Submitted by Chris Pedemonte, a Colinas Farming Company Vineyard Manager

Originally posted on Round Pond Estate website at http://www.roundpond.com/index.cfm?method=pages.showPage&pageid=9f693fab-022b-716c-e899-01e6e2d4c798.