Wednesday, September 30, 2009

an update from east Pete

More work in small barn getting 2nd level ready to store rest of the lugs. Lugs on trailer to take to Charlotte Hall (hereafter CH) for cleaning. Believe they should be sqeaky clean before storing in barn. Cleaned out stall holding Pallets, now SCAG parking.

Measured corn field site of Lot 13. From north end to apple tree on south end, are in corn this year was approx 2.2 acres. As need be this could be expanded some by moving up the hill toward the house by another 25 ft. That space will provide an additional 1/3 acre and will help get out of the shade of the big Sycamores and other trees on the south east.

Charlie will call Mike R- and inform him that field will no longer be available for his use and that we would consider hiring him to help us prepare that field for grapes if he is interested. We also need to know from him what pesticides/herbicides and other amendments he may have used. We did not have time to auger various locations to test for hard pan.

Gish brothers help most appreciated.

I attended a show and tell at the POL Winery for the 5 Commissioners, town Council, County and Town Staff, MARBIDCO, AG DEV Commission etc. Very well received. Some Chamborcin must perking away in the box containers. If you stick your head in the carbon dioxide will clear the sinuses big time. Bob Schaller introduced me as a spokesman for our family and the success of Rootstock 09 that was so impressive. Also favorable mention of our crops fermenting in the tanks. The Commish knew who we were when told of vineyards on Golden Beach Rd. Pat, Rich, Caroline, Steve, James, Mary and Joe Wood, David, Chris Bologna also helped. And Steve McHenry of MARBIDCO, and Christine Bergmark of SMADC were there for the first time. A very positive session. They all want us to make very good wine! and be successful.


Thursday, September 24, 2009

there it is

ok...quick update:
We harvested 5074 lb of Vidal Blanc about two weeks ago. It came in at a solid 23 brix, with acid and pH in, what the wine maker called a "respectable" level.
As the King of Germany said to Mozart: "well, there it is."
There it is, indeed.
The first commercial harvest after six years of growing, and many prior to that in the planning and development stages.

but wait! there's more!
Queued up next is an estimated 1,000 lb of Viognier. The fruit may not have the level of sugars, but I'm impressed with how well it has held up in this very wet, very disease-prone year. Maybe it's the thick skins, but something has allowed this fruit to stay relatively clean, well past any date where it would have normally been pulled from the vine.
Beautiful stuff.

Tuesday, September 01, 2009

and then, something wonderful

it kept coming. a few short weeks at midsummer the clouds tarried and the ground dried out, leaving us to think the worst was over. But, like a tide leaving the shore only to flood back, the clouds returned bringing the rains steadily every few days.
Rain. Sun. Heat. Humidity. Rain.

So here we go into our final run for the season: Harvest and crush just around the corner.
Any grower will tell you, if given only two weeks of perfect weather during the year, to have it be the two weeks before harvest.

For two days the air is dry, sunny, and warm during the day, then dropping cool at night. It's only two days, but all it takes is a string of twelve more to turn an entire season around.