The grapes are looking seriously good. Especially compared to last year. There’s a even spread across the bunches, a pretty much even spread across the vines, and they’re a decent size. In fact, there’s so many of them we may be picking about 20 tonnes come October time, compared to 4 tonnes last year. ( It’s not all about the amount though, because you want the concentration of flavour in every grape!)
Thanks to the good heat we’ve had (35C one day) we’re catching up. We’ve gone from 4 weeks, to two weeks, to about 10 days to 1 week behind last year. The grapes are close to ‘bunch closure’, and Alex has completed the second spraying of Bacillus Subtilis this last week, to help stop botrytis.
The vines have been topped to slow down the growth, and concentrate the energy to the grapes. This involves the skinny vineyard tractor and a contraption to cut straight along the top. Some of the foliage around the bunches has also been removed to help airflow. Last year this was done by hand, but thankfully this year we employed the use of a machine shaking the leaves to pieces… more on Nick’s blog.
I’m looking forward to later in the year and picking a good crop.