31 May 2013

May was good to us.

The beautiful weather at the start of the month has us averaging 2F higher this May compared to last May and with the rainfall at the end of the month we are only had a little less total rain.  Those 2 degrees however have yielded great growing results.  Look at these pictures of Muller Thurgau. One is from last year, June 6th, 2012 and the other from May 31st, 2013.  This year's vines are ahead of last years, you can tell quickly by counting the leaves on a shoot and the picture is a week earlier.  Right now we are probably two weeks ahead of last year!  Yeah!
May 31, 2013
June 6, 2012

We are ahead of ourselves in the winery too for a change.  Looking back at the past two years I wrote about bottling in the month of May and this year we were done in March.  Thus it has been rather quiet in the winery this past month.  The pinot barrels are almost done with ML, two barrels are hanging on and there are three barrels of Chardonnay being stubborn.    Tasting through all the barrels last week while running SO2s and checking pHs, multi-tasking at its best, I'm finding the tannins are trying to strip the enamel from my teeth and the spit from my cheeks, but it's early days yet so I'm not worried.  On the positive side the color is beautiful and there are some lovely dark fruit notes lurking under all those tannins just waiting for their time to shine.

In the vineyard the crew is almost done suckering the vine trunks and cleaning heads, also earlier than last year and Mary is predicting that we could see bloom starting in the Foch next week if the weather holds.  If you have never been out during bloom I recommend making the trip, the smell of grape vine blooms is something quite ethereal and rather unique.  I enjoy it every year and always wish the smell lasted longer.  Speaking of ethereally scented blooms I took a tour of a cocoa plantation earlier this spring in Hawaii and the cocoa blossom might just compare in scent and certainly is a lot prettier.

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