Sauvignon Blanc – Day One

Selene’s first day of Harvest of Hyde Sauvignon Blanc is coming to an end. The grapes are in the press and about half way through their cycle. I’m just hanging around the winery to check the flavors and the yield near the end of the press cycle, to make sure everything is the way we want it. Boy, we had a nice crop, and a good pick. The fruit looked real good, and was real tasty. It was cloudy till about noon, and that’s the time we finished picking. The timing was great, got it in the press nice and cold, and now we’ll get it in the tank and let it settle overnight.

Harvest is about a month later than last year. 2004 was of coarse an incredibly early harvest, and this year is a little bit on the late side, but seems especially late considering the earliness of last year’s harvest. Definitely we will see slightly lower sugars and a little bit more acid, but the flavors and the concentration are really wonderful.

Just talking about the type of year we have had, September up till this point, we have had only one day in the Carneros that has hit 80 degrees. Everything else has been below that. A lot of those days we have seen fog through the morning hours and sometimes into the early afternoon hours. That’s part of the reason we are running so late. I called the first pick of this Sauvignon Blanc off, because the flavors just didn’t go as fast as I thought they were. Luckily when I came back three days later, things had moved along nicely. I was happy to make the call for a couple days later to pick the grapes.

So I’m pleased with what I see today, and tomorrow we are going after the rest of the Sauvignon Blanc in Block one. Then at the end of next week we will be going after the Sauvignon Blanc in Block two.

Up until this point we have only sampled one of our red grape vineyards, Blue Oak Cabernet Vineyard, and that was done about 10 days ago. It’s hanging around 20.8, so it might be ready the end of the month or the first part of October.

I’m planning on sampling Frediani Vineyards, in Calistoga and Stagecoach Vineyards very soon. Frediani, which I get Cab Franc and a little bit of Merlot from, is unusually behind. Normally I pick that right around the Sauvignon Blanc. But this year they got a late start, then Calistoga got some heat, then it got hotter than other places, which slowed down the vines, then cooler than other places, which also slowed the vines down. In addition to that, it seems like Cab Franc and Merlot are running a little more behind other Bordeaux varieties, more than usual, or what I would expect.

I also gave the barrel plan to the winemaker at Laird for the Sauvignon Blanc. When it gets racked off settlings and goes down to barrel for fermentation, they will know the types of barrels I want to use, and numbers, as well as the yeast we will use for inoculation. I’m pretty sure there won’t be any need for any sort of addition. I’ve never once added acid to Selene Sauvignon Blanc, and it won’t be necessary this year either. We got about 14 tons today, and I’m expecting on the order of 8 to 10 tons tomorrow. So we should have a slightly easier day than today.

Comments are closed.