As of today, July 14th, we are seeing only a small amount of color beginning to develop in the red berries. This is what we call Veraison, (Ver-ray-shun), it is a French term meaning the onset of ripening. It’s hard to believe that in only a few more weeks we’ll begin the task of taking samples from all of our vineyards to monitor the ripening process. This means the start of harvest is less than 8 weeks away!
I’m frequently asked about how the drought is affecting the us in the wine business. We are fortunate, at the moment, to have ample water supplies both in our vineyards and at the winery. However, we are hyper-vigilant with our water use and are ensuring there are no water leaks so as not to waste water. Waste not – want not, right? With the weather conditions being what they’ve been, we’ve only had to minimally irrigate our vineyards once this year so the vines are not needing too much.
I consider this a good thing. Our ultimate goal is to promote the roots to grow as deep as possible where three things happen.
- The temperature is consistent.
- The humidity is consistent.
- Deep down is where I believe the Terroir of the site is found. This is where the vines and fruit can truly express the sense of place that is so important to our winemaking philosophy here at Renwood.
Over the next several months several of our new 2013 wines will be released and we are very excited about this! The fruit and power of this vintage is not like anything I’ve seen for a long time. Did you know that we only make 200 cases of each of the wines that are poured in the tasting room? We will always strive to make wines that have typicity of variety and typicity of site. Wines that are delicious, interesting and unique. We are passionate about sharing only wines of the highest quality, and wines that make you think.
Once again, we reach one of my favorite times of the year. The new 2013 blends have been put together and are slumbering peacefully as we make the final preparations for bottling at the beginning of May.
As I’ve said in earlier reports, the 2013 vintage is one for the ages. Power, finesse, grace, balance and concentrated fruit are our most commonly used descriptors when we talk about the wines from this vintage. New things are on the horizon for you in the coming months including the return of the esteemed Grandmere that will be a blend of Zinfandel, Syrah and Petite Sirah. We’ll also be spotlighting a few of the favorite vineyard designate Zinfandels. It's a very exciting personal project for me.
Moises and I are looking forward to the 3013 release and sharing these wines with you.
I was recently asked why I discontinued the use of American oak barrels in our winemaking program. American oak has been part of a general Standard Operating Procedure amongst Zinfandel producers for many, many years. Truth is, I have no idea why. When the same wine is put into high quality American oak and French oak, the differences are striking and dramatic! The wine aged in French oak is soft, subtle, and the purest essence of the Zinfandel grape fully expressed.
You will definitely taste the difference in all of our latest vintage releases as we have shifted our barrel program to French oak. I hope you will be pleased. I am committed to using the highest quality products to make our wines, and the proof is in the juice!
Warmest Regards, Joe