Wednesday, September 12, 2007

A surprise gift

This was not the year we expected. The previous two years here in Napa Valley were wet in the Spring followed by long hot summers and leading to compressed harvests. This season however was a bit of a surprise. A temperate Spring allowed for almost full set in the clusters and the weather remained even but warm throughout the summer with no rainfall.

At the end of August we went through a heat spike bringing up the sugars quickly and dropping the acids in the fruit that ripened early. This led many to believe that once again all of the fruit would come in at once.

The first week of September proved different. The pressure system changed and everything slowed down again keeping with the trend of 2007.

It's the 12th now and our fruit is still on the vine. Consistent daily temperatures have provided for slow maturing of the grapes and concentrating flavors. The clusters look fine, tight, but fleshy with no rot. We are also pleased to know that the acids remain high, balanced, and will provide a terrific backbone for this year's vintage.

This may prove to be one of the finer years Napa Valley has seen in some time and we eagerly anticipate what this year will contribute to Vellum's first vintage.

- Karl

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