does Spring become Summer? This time of year it’s anyone’s guess.
Traditionally, June has always been noted as the last month of Spring but as
kids everywhere will tell you as they wait with anticipation for the end of
their school year June is definitely the start of summer vacation!
It appears our summer is coming in jerks and jags
this year. Although the weather has settled down from frosty nights we are
still experiencing foggy mornings and even some rainy days in between
beautiful warm “summery” weather. And while it’s been a mix of weather the
temperature has gotten comfortable enough to wear only a light sweater most
days. When the fog breaks up midmorning the sky is a beautiful blue and
everywhere we look everything is abuzz with bees, butterflies and birds. As
for the vineyard all is pretty much on time now as it should be. Looking at
the vines they have almost reached their peak height tucked into their
tallest wires, their lush tendrils reaching up to the sun. The blossoms we
were so recently worrying over with threat of frosty nights are now
transforming into little grape clusters–our next vintage of Pinot Noir wine.
And as of the beginning of June the rows have been disked, the vines have
been thinned and we are in the middle of our annual crop thinning. But
unfortunately, even with the drop of rain we received in April, we can tell
the ground is already quite dry–a harbinger of the season to come.
What will the summer months bring? We would love some
more rain, but we really don’t want rain this time of year. Warm weather and
rain don’t go well together on grape vines. Mildew is the result. Not good.
Lucky for us our area has not been as hard hit with
drought since we’ve received a few extra inches of rain this past winter than
other areas around the state. But we are not letting this stop us from
conserving and planning ahead for less. For who knows what the future will
bring–more of the same? Or worse? All we can do is pray that Mother Nature
will somehow balance herself out–and sooner rather than later.
Speaking of the drought, just the other day we were
sitting around discussing just that over a glass of Pinot when someone
mentioned how delicious our 2013 vintage tastes.
in April at our Spring wine club event, our 2013 estate grown Pinot Noir wine
is proving to be a winner! Everyone who’s gotten a chance to taste it likens
it to our best vintage yet. We agree as it seems each succeeding vintage is
better than the last! This 2013 has stellar flavor, as well as the
distinctive well rounded body and smooth mouth feel of a wine that comes from
a maturing vineyard–everything that makes a wine great! We feel this vintage
will be recognized as one of the best Pinots around.
recently asked if we thought the drought might affect the flavor of the
wines. Could this be true? It got us to thinking–who knows? Could less rain
make the wine have more something? Might it make it more flavorful? More
drinkable? More inviting? What might it do to the grapes? We do have knowledge
of an old (like 100 years old) vineyard in the Calistoga area that was never
irrigated. It was a head pruned vineyard and in the heat of summer (and it is
VERY hot in Calistoga in the summer) the vines continued to make grapes of
exceptional quality which, in turn, became very exceptional wine, vintage
after vintage. With this in mind, and as it was a very compelling question,
we decided we better do some research on this subject.
Of course, the only way to know would be to taste and
compare our vintages. (We know -it's a tough job but somebody has to do it.)
Unfortunately for us, we realized we don’t have any (or very few) vintages
that were grown during this drought period. We also have very few actual
bottles left to use for our comparison tasting. Our wine was THAT good that
it just went fast. Anyway, after rummaging around a bit we managed to find a
couple bottles of our past vintages to use in our research. We’ll let you
know the results in detail next newsletter. Suffice it to say, not surprisingly,
our wines compared nicely to each other, drought or no drought.
our Wine Club! -
all year long
Contact Dan or Jan at O’Connell Vineyards regarding your
membership, to order wine
and for wine club events at the number below, or visit our website at
email your order
If you prefer to place your order by phone, please contact us
directly at 888-889-0929.
You may also pick-up your order at the vineyard.
Burgandy style Pinot - perfect
for any occasion.
(Regular Price $45.00)
HERE to place your order