This has been a fabulous year to be a grape farmer in Sonoma Valley, CA. We had enough rain in the winter and spring to saturate the soil and fill the aquifers, and then a warm
and pleasant summer without too many scorching hot days and the big finish with a dry and pleasant fall. What California grape growing is all about, and why we make the best wine in the world.
Being a grape farmer is, for me, the largest part of being a winemaker. My winemaking philosophy is pretty damn simple: farm or procure the finest grapes you can, keep your wine “clean” by extensive sorting of MOG (matter other than grapes) from the tank before fermentation and then letting the land, climate and place (terrior) speak for itself by keeping as hands-off as possible. And I think our wine speaks for itself rather well.
All grapes are in and wine is being made.
The weather has broken with cold and wet being pretty dominant this week, and although the sun is about to shine again, the vines are going dormant and we get to concentrate on finishing the wine, putting it to rest in lovely oak barrels and taking it a little slower on the farm.
Life is good.