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Wine Diary

Autumn Rain

October 10, 2011

After the incredibly beautiful and warm days of September and early October the grapes are replete with sweetness and entirely healthy.
Despite this, I suspect there will be a slightly sharp and unbalanced character to some of the wines harvested up to now.

During the last few days, the grapes already showed signs of stress due to dryness. They were clearly yearning for a nourishing autumn shower. Now the rain has come and we accept it with mixed feelings.

For the vines, the rain is a relief, bringing moisture before the onset of winter. It is possible that small traces of thsi rain - filtered by the root system - will find its way into the wine barrels, contributing to the drinkability and balance of these wines.

After the end of the rain, dry days and cool nights - later very cool nights close to zero degrees - would enable us to harvest very, very great wines. These wines would show not only perfect balance, they would have a story to tell - of heat and cold, fear and hope, and without any hint of bitter tannins.

These would be the top wines we dream of.

On the other hand, a warm and moist spell (tropical conditions) could have fatal consequences, such as unwanted rot. So far, our most valuable berries have not yet been picked.
The motto for this week is: wait and see, and removing leaves around the grapes so that the cool north-westerly wind and the mild autumn sun can support the last stage of ripening.