One of the most rewarding parts of working in this industry is doing business with the same people for decades. Love this recent write-up from our old friends at K&L Wines:
Last year at this time all anyone could talk about was how 2012 was a great year. Well, then, what does that make 2013? There’s only one answer: a really, really great year.
The season got started with huge amounts of rain in December followed by drought conditions throughout the spring. Warm conditions and early flowering meant that ripening was several weeks ahead of the norm. The lack of spring rainfall allowed us to control irrigation in the vineyards, keeping vines and canopies healthy but maintaining small, concentrated berry size. The summer continued with warm but not excessively hot conditions, and just when things were looking like we’d harvest early completing a very good season, Mother Nature gave us an even better gift: conditions cooled down to slightly below normal, extending the growing season for several weeks. Weeks of sunny days and cool nights in September and October allowed the grapes to continue maturing and deepening their complex flavors without danger of over ripening, creating the best of all conditions.
With small berries providing higher skin to juice ratios for fermentation, the warm days helped the grapes retain their color while cool nights aided acid retention. We’re very excited about the concentration in the Cab we’ve brought in this year. The wine is intensely colored and rich in texture and flavor, with very good, balanced flavors and nice acid retention.
We have two Cabernet vineyards left to harvest, and will bring in the final grapes by mid-week next week. Then we will most certainly toast to an incredible vintage, courtesy of Mother Nature.
This week we kicked off the first of several weeks of “Harvest Boot Camp” at Amici Cellars. We welcomed friends from around the country that want to get a true insider’s view of how a Napa Valley harvest works–and are willing to roll up their sleeves and work hard to get that view! The first week of Harvest Boot Camp was a busy one: the crew’s days were filled with early morning harvests in the vineyards, sorting stems and leaves from grapes at the sorting table, building barrels, touring vineyards, cleaning winery equipment — and, of course, plenty of fun times with good food and wine to celebrate their hard work. On Friday we sent our first crew off to the airport, with purple-stained fingers, tired and happy after five days of hard work, and (hopefully) full of great stories to tell their co-workers back home. Now to greet the next crew!
There was a nip in the air on Tuesday morning as we brought in the fruit from the Missouri Hopper Vineyard in the Oakville AVA.