Thursday, June 3, 2010

The lastest on what's happening at Pinnacle Ridge

The June e-newsletter from Pinnacle Ridge in Kutztown came out this week and they had some exciting news to share about their newest vintages and this season's growth in the vineyard. See what owners Brad and Christy had to say below.

2008 CABERNET FRANC: 2008 was a very good vintage and we're proud to release this intense example of Cabernet Franc. This Cabernet Franc shows great structure and fruit layered with some toast elements from aging in American oak barrels. We feel this is the BEST VARIETAL CABERNET FRANC we've ever released.

2008 SYRAH: We're trying something a little different with the 2008 Syrah. Based on the number of great, dry barrel-aged reds we have in our line up of wines, we decided to do something different. We aged part of our Syrah in older American oak barrels and the rest of the wine in stainless steel tank. This approach allows the fruit to come through without the influence of wood flavors. Additionally, we finished the wine with just a hint of sweetness.  It is not as sweet as our Quaff but it does come across a little softer than some of our other red wines. If you are starting to enjoy red wines, but find some of them too dry, try our new 2008 SYRAH.
Warning: Vineyard exploding!  As the heat turns up, the vineyard responds with explosive growth.  June is the most exciting time of year in the vineyard.  Every year I am amazed at the tremendous growth that occurs in the vineyard in June. The shoots of the vine grow at such a rate that the change can be seen on a daily basis.  The young flower clusters that form during April and May begin to bloom.  Bloom is when the flowers open, become pollinated and transform into tiny grapes. 

The vineyard workload in June can be very difficult to manage.  The growing shoots have a tendency to flop out of the trellis and need to be placed back into the trellis.  As the shoots climb over the top of the trellis they need to be hedged so that they do not flop over and shade the fruit zone.
2010 started out with a bang with very, very hot weather in early April. We experienced the earliest bud-break since we started growing grapes in 1991. With the early bud-break comes risk from frost damage. We did have some frost damage in the vineyards in Kempton but we feel that the damage will have a minimal impact on our yields this year. The good side to the early bud-break is the growing season started early and should finish early.

Bloom started on May 28, the earliest we have ever seen in our vineyards.  Based on this early bud-break and early bloom, we anticipate having an early harvest. This situation is very advantageous for grape growing.  Early harvest means that there is an increased probability of harvesting before the hurricane rains start. It means the harvest occurs when the weather is warmer resulting in very ripe fruit and concurrent ripe flavors.

We’re excited about the way vintage 2010 is unfolding. Stay tuned.

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