October 20, 2009

Near the end

The crush of crush is past peak, like nearly every fermentation in the winery. Just looking around it's obvious. Space on the floor is opening up as bins begin to be drained, the pomace pressed, the new wine settled before being put in barrel. Workers have a bit more room to move around. Things aren't done, not at all, but there's progress and surely plans are afoot for an end of harvest celebration in a few weeks.

The wines for my project look to be safely in barrel in one week. Pressing for the first two fermenters is scheduled for Friday, the third on Sunday. Those first two are both "negative" meaning they're just about dry, when all the sugar's gone and the wine is made (though hardly finished). The trick now is to push them to completion as they've slowed considerably and the temperatures have dropped into the 70sF. The fruit for the third bin came into the winery four days later, but it's nearly negative after a surprisingly quick fermentation. Hopefully not too quick.

These wines should all have at least a day or two of continued maceration on the skins after going dry, which I generally like to see so the wines have a chance to gain complexity and texture, perhaps at the expense of fresh fruitiness. Looks like things will get two days to settle before being put into barrel, so that Sunday press should go into barrel Tuesday and everything, for now, done. A whole lot more happens before wine is ready to bottle in about a year, but next Tuesday will mark the end of a good first harvest for Vincent. Is it too early to start thinking about next year? [yes]

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