Following a very cool spring and summer, vintage was around four weeks later than last year and one of our latest on record, as we were not finished until early May.
Another flood between Christmas and New Year meant even longer delays on the old flood plain vineyards. It certainly took a huge effort from our vineyard crew of Tim and Josh to get the grapes to full ripeness, this year with extra trimming, spraying and bunch thinning required.
I spent a lot more time than usual in the vineyard this vintage, to make sure (ensure) only the best fruit was being received in to the winery.
Tim and Josh would rather I stayed in the winery, for as they say as soon as the winemaker is in the vineyard it normally means more work for them!
The white wines this year look exceptional with intense flavours and lovely natural acidity. Out of the reds, cabernet looks the pick, although I have some outstanding parcels of shiraz and malbec to play with also.
The vintage crew this year consisted of not one, but two nephews, however, with the late start to vintage and needing to keep eager workers busy, the winery was the cleanest it’s been in a while!
Luke was back for a second stint at vintage, putting up with Uncle Greg but decided to head off to USA for a family holiday for three weeks in April! Fortunately, when he got back in late April, it was actually the busiest 10 day period for the vintage!
Roger’s son, Jack, having just left school has also spent the last few months helping with vintage, in what is becoming a ‘right of passage’, for the next generation. Being the youngest he was the butt of most jokes in the winery but gave back as good as he got! (The apple doesn't fall far from the tree.)
I am sure Nanny’s cooking has a fair bit to do with getting the boys through vintage, if she ever retires we will have to hire a full time chef just for the workers!