by Winemaker Paul Brock
December 6, 2013– 2013 was dominated by rain during June, July and August. These conditions made disease control via canopy management and spraying critical. Vigor of both vines and weeds were challenging everywhere. In order to accommodate the large vines, vineyards were forced to keep larger crops in order to balance the vines’ growth.
The end of August and all of September brought dry weather and nearly perfect conditions for ripening.
Rain returned as the later season varieties were ready to come in. The early season disease pressure reared its ugly head in some vineyards that did not have the proper management early in the season. This resulted in a varied Riesling crop throughout the region. Some was beautiful, some not. Flavors were great and the wines seem to have come through nicely. Most varieties surprisingly had sugar levels at or above 2012 numbers. This was very vineyard dependent.
The region has brought in a record crop with good quality. Silver Thread has brought in very nice grapes as we work with diligent growers and have control over our own crop. The Riesling we harvested from our own vineyard was the cleanest of all vineyards that I worked with this harvest. Doyle fruit has produced the typical deep wine from the Fournier vineyard that we are used to. Both Randolf O’Neill and Gridley have flavors typical of those sites. We are very excited about 2013 in all varieties as the temperatures were perfect for flavor development.