Wine Talk

Snooth User: outthere

2012 Growing Season

Original post by outthere, May 16, 2012.

Thought I'd start a new thread rather than clog the Rosé thread with a drift.

As I was telling you Fox, bloom is iminent. I took these shots this afternoon at Copain.

Ready to burst at any time. Hopefully we have a normal weather year for a change.

Replies

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Reply by Richard Foxall, Jun 26, 2012.

OT, that's fantastic.  Better to be able to drop fruit and cane than to hold one's breath and hope there's enough yield.  Still, that's a lot of vigor.  How well is a cluster like that going to ripen?

Nice shots up there in Rockpile--not too many folks get up there.  You could go to Lake Sonoma and never know it was there, and if you tour DCV and RRV, again, you have no idea.   

I've had Syrahs and Pinots from Hudson and always preferred the Syrahs.  I wonder sometimes if the rush to plant pinot has mismatched vineyards and grapes in the area.  Same experience with Truchard--like the Syrahs better. 

I also like these shots because it dispels the notion of genteel farming with "minimal" intervention.  If wine is made in the vineyard, it's because there's a lot of work done there before the first grape gets picked.  And you can decide where "natural" starts and ends for yourself, but goats, horses and mules aren't the norm--or very practical. 

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Reply by outthere, Jun 27, 2012.

Beckstoffer Georges III cabernet in the Napa Valley. Looking gooood!

 

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Reply by Richard Foxall, Jun 27, 2012.

Nice, OT.  Do you know which clone?  That's where Anthony Bell first convinced BV to make one-clone wines and blind taste them. 

Do you just walk out into these vineyards unimpeded?  Or do you know folks? I guess we could ask you to geotag the pix to verify, but I recognize those Rockpile shots, having just been there.

Good cab bunches are, I'm told, long and loose like that.  So, yeah, that's promising.

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Reply by JonDerry, Jun 27, 2012.

From Larkmead

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Reply by Richard Foxall, Jun 27, 2012.

These pictures are so good they are NSFW.  But we get to stay in this state until the wine is bottled.

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Reply by outthere, Jul 3, 2012.

Verasion has begun before July 4th! This is crazy. Turley Zinfandel.

 

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Reply by JonDerry, Jul 4, 2012.

Sweet.

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Reply by outthere, Jul 5, 2012.

Dropping fruit (Syrah) at Lagier Meredith on Mt Veeder

 

Verasion (Mourvedre) at Evanghelo Vineyard in Contra Costa

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Reply by outthere, Aug 5, 2012.

In the Russian River Valley verasion is almost complete on the red varietals and the clusters are almost all purple now. This past week was the turning point as everything seemed to turn at the same time.

Meanwhile....

Verasion well under way on Shake Ridge Mourvedre - Amador County

 

Dirty and Rowdy Wine Semillon in Yountville

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Reply by outthere, Aug 8, 2012.

Here comes the heat. Supposed to be triple digits through Monday. The wind is blowing offshore and it's only going to get hotter. Sure hope it doesn't turn into one of those 112 degree scorchers. This season has been too perfect for things to get screwed up now. Today was forecast for 90 and it has soared past that. 

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Reply by JonDerry, Aug 8, 2012.

Crap, everyone needs to get out there with spray bottles to cool the situation.

 

By the way, that Amador County fruit looks stunning...

 

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Reply by Richard Foxall, Aug 8, 2012.

Agree with JD about the Amador mourvedre.  Also a favorite grape. 

Not getting that heat so much in Oakland, but it's been clear in the morning and evening, so that's a sign that we aren't getting good marine layer.  With luck, the heat will break quickly.  Because it hasn't been cold and foggy like it was in 2010, the canopy won't be completely compromised, I hope, and we'll just get a sugar spike if we're lucky.  Then the natural a/c of Central Valley convection will (crossed fingers) suck some fog through the gate. 

Things were looking good, but it isn't over till it's over.

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Reply by outthere, Aug 13, 2012.

Well, all the signs were there but. The heat never materialized. Hit triple digits in the Napa Valley but nothing close to where I expected. We were low 90s or high 80s all weekend. Warm days and cool nights. Just the way the grapes like it in the RRV. This continues to be a great growing season for California. 

I've been waiting to see fruit thinning but haven't seen it on a lot of properties. The higher end producers are thinning but many others are not. I'm wondering if for some out there that this is a year of redemption after a few real challenging growing years where yields were low to nil. The heavy amount of fruit hanging makes me wonder if growers are trying to recoup some losses. Or, maybe its a sign of the times and there will be more middle of the road priced wine produced this year. Your guess is as good as mine. Took these shots in Healdsburg on Friday as an example of the heavy load.

 

That's Pinot Noir on Eastside Rd.

 

Carloe Meredith shared these shots of her vineyard on Mt Veeder

Syrah

and lovely Zinfandel

I'll try to get a few shots of the Napa Valley fruit today on my travels.

 

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Reply by outthere, Aug 13, 2012.

A couple wildfires broke out over the weekend. One in Mendocino County and the other in Lake County.Smoke from the Mendocino fire is drifting south down the Hwy 101 corridor through the RRV. The Lake County fires smoke is rolling across the east side of the Napa Valley towards Howell Mountain.

Here is a shot of it obscuring the view of Mt St Helena this morning.

and heading south

I hope they get these under control quickly. Would hate to see a repeat of 2008.

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Reply by Erica Landin, Aug 13, 2012.

Was highly confused by the picture of "bloom" at the beginning of the thread, until I read the date. Looks like they are coming along nicely! Bit worried about the fires though - are they under control?

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Reply by JonDerry, Aug 13, 2012.

Great to hear Brian, thanks for updating us...was a little worried.

Interesting about the heavy loads, though I'd expect many of the average producers try to up their production after a few weaker crops.

That picture of Carol's Zin looks amazing, maybe that 2012 is a vintage to look for in Lagier Meredith Zin.

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Reply by Richard Foxall, Aug 13, 2012.

OT (his cover is blown) drives around Napa and Sonoma for his job, so he started this thread a while back when I asked about bud break in another thread.  Major public service. 

It didn't get very hot near the bay or ocean, but San Ramon hit 111 in the daytime then dropped to 59 at night, a drop of 52 degrees.  I live less than ten miles from my parents but on the inner bay side of the Berkeley-Oakland hills, and it was 20 degrees hotter there--we barely broke 70 and they were over 90. 

Nonetheless, I moved JD's wine to the basement where it remains in the 60s.

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Reply by JonDerry, Aug 13, 2012.

Thank you Fox...had been wondering about the storage. We may as well ship in fall when the weather cools if that's okay. If you ever have any over-flow in your basement, feel free to ship me case of your mid-long term agers, I have space in my locker.

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Reply by outthere, Aug 13, 2012.

94 degrees today in Forestville as I arrive home. Was 53 and fogged in this morning. Love the summer weather here.

The fire in Hopland has been extinguished. The 2 Lake County fires which have now been combined to one incident called the Wye Fire are still burning and are only 15% contained. Approx 5,000 acres have burned and 500 homes have been evacuated. The smoke is pretty thick and is traveling south. Wind directions could change at any time so tomorrow when I wake up there might not be any smoke visible from Sonoma County or my yard can be dusted with ash. Right now it blocks the view of Mt St Helena from over here in the RRV. The forecast is for warm weather in or near triple digits in Lake and Colusa Counties throughout the week so things are going to be tough.

The Lake County Recorder Bee has a slew of pictures posted on their Facebook Page from yesterday.

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Reply by outthere, Aug 14, 2012.

Alicante Bouschet at Pagani Ranch this afternoon. I LOVE this vineyard



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