I Love Sampling!

Okay, just so you don’t think I was whining in my previous post. Check out the ground in the center of the rows in the dry farmed Merlot.

I probably look drunk the way I walk through that vineyard. Anyway, we had another great day of sampling.

Here is the Cabernet Franc vineyard. There are still some berries in some clusters on vines here and there that are pink or green (haven’t gone through verasion). This is the first year for me that I’ve seen this in almost every vineyard.

Although most of the vines have completed verasion and look like this one. Mia says there have been years that have been worse than this as far as uneven ripening in clusters, and she doesn’t think it’s a big deal.

This is the J Merlot. We sampled the 181 Merlot also. Then we drove down to St. Helena and got samples of the Bressler’s Cabernet Franc, Petite Verdot, and Cabernet Sauvignon.

From Left to right and their brix readings:

Frediani 181 Merlot 23.2 brix
Frediani J Merlot 22.2 brix
Frediani Cab Franc 22.1 brix
Bressler Cab Franc 23.5 brix (Mia’s sample)
Bressler Cab Franc 23.6 brix (Tracy’s sample)
Bressler Petite Verdot 21.7 brix
Bressler Cabernet 21.6 brix

You can still spot the Cab Franc from Frediani as it’s the orange juice glass.

The best part of today, was talking Mia into stopping for lunch at Redd in Yountville on the way home. (Let’s face facts, I’m only in this for the food.) While we looked grubby in our shorts and boots, and had a little dust cloud (ala pig pen) following us from the vineyards, no one at Redd cared. The food was incredible, as always. After the heirloom tomato salad (the best ever), my usual tartare AND sashimi, and the prosciutto pizza (do NOT skip this!), I felt more than human again!

One of the best things about harvest is lunch. We have so many great places to eat in the valley, and they all welcome the grape muck covered, dusty people like us! – Skippy