Monday, September 10, 2012

Sierra Foothills/Ed Dorado County Harvest Report: Cedarville Vineyard (Fair Play)

Jonathan Lachs, who with Susan Marks is owner/winemaker of CedarvilleVineyard in Fair Play, El Dorado County, Sierra Foothills of California, sends these harvest notes:

Zinfandel clusters, Sept 2012,
Cedarville Vineyard,  El Dorado County
“Activity is picking up quickly here in our Cedarville Estate vineyard.  Throughout our vineyard, we’re experiencing even ripening with targeted pick dates closer to historical “averages” or as we often say, “normal”.  It’s been a few years since we’ve had normal pick dates, with 2009, 2010, and 2011 all later-to-much later than normal. 

We harvested Syrah grapes for Hank Beckmeyer and Caroline Hoel’s La Clarine Farm rosé on Saturday, September 8th,  as well as some Viognier for one of their white blends.  They make wines with little intervention beyond a touch of sulfur before bottling (some folks call them “Natural Wines”), and they are terrific expressions of where they are grown.

At Cedarville, we now plan to pick our first Syrah grapes at the end of the week.  Our Syrah always seems to ripen first due to lower yields and its higher elevation on our property. 

Our highest elevation Zin is coming along, too, and we’re targeting September 20th pick date. 

One trend we’re experiencing this year in our Estate vineyard is grape physiological maturity at lower than usual sugar levels.  We usually associate this with cooler years, and means we may not need wait for higher sugar levels to achieve desired flavors, which means potentially lower alcohols in the subsequent wines.  Never a bad thing.  We’ll need to wait and see if it truly plays out this way."



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