Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Woody Harvest 2011

My "harvest has begun" blog quickly turned into a "harvest is finally winding down" blog with the craziness in the tasting room the past couple of weeks. But instead of giving an update and then waiting a week or two for the next, everything will come out at once. Here's the full rundown on harvest at Woodward Canyon! 

The 2011 harvest was definitely one of those hurry up and wait seasons. We were one of the first wineries in the valley, if not the first, to bring in fruit, our Estate sauvignon blanc, on September 15th.
Estate sauvignon blanc through the press
 Next in was our Estate chardonnay, harvested eleven days later, on September 26th.

Estate Chardonnay
Then our cellar crew played the waiting game until the reds and DuBrul Riesling were ready for harvest. DuBrul Riesling was harvested on October 13th and then crushed first thing the following morning. The first of the reds harvested was roughly two tons of syrah out of the Champoux Vineyard on October 14th.

Champoux Syrah
After that things picked up to a steady pace. 9.3 tons of Weinbau merlot came in on October 18th. 5.5 tons of Sagemoor cabernet and 8 tons of Woodward Canyon Estate cab franc was brought in on October 21st. And we brought in the last of our whites, a bit of Celilo chardonnay on October 22nd.

Celilo Vineyard Chardonnay
The cabernet grapes were the last of the grapes to ripen and be harvested. We brought in Champoux Vineyard cabernet sauvignon blocks 1 and 2 (typically designated for "Old Vines") on October 27th. Canoe Ridge (block 7 and 16) and Spring Creek cabernet came in October 28th. Champoux cabernet, blocks 4 and 2 lower, came in October 30th.

Champoux Vineyard Block 1
The last of the cabernet we brought in was from Les Collines and Hedges Vineyard on October 31st and November 1st and an additional 3 tons of Les Collines cabernet on November 4th.

All in all we ended up with right around 109 tons of fruit for the 2011 vintage. Both Rick and Kevin seem to be excited about the fruit we did get from this cooler, later vintage, and are excited about the wines we will see down the road.

"This vintage reminds me most of 1984 followed then by 1991 and 1993.  The wines are sure to be different but they will be good from good producers.  I believe I told someone else that the wines will be more like the wines we used to make 25 years ago; like left bank Bordeaux possibly"  - Rick Small