Wine Openers | All Blogs


Hot growing season has grape crop in early

By Dave Buchanan

Colorado’s wine grape crop came through the hot, dry summer in better condition than many people might have expected.

While there aren’t yet any numbers on the total production, comments from producers and winemakers indicate the summer growing season was short, intense and productive.

“Everything came in early,” said state viticulturist Horst Caspari of the Colorado State University Orchard Mesa Research Center. “I think everything was picked by the 20th of October this year and sometimes they pick into November.”

Parker Carlson at Carlson Vineyards said he was done a month ahead of his normal schedule. “Harvest was really good, in fact almost too good,” Parker said. “We got a lot of grapes and quality was for the most part pretty good.”

“The weather had everything ripening on top of other but this was the first time in my 24 or 25 years (of grape growing) that we were finished by end of September,” he said. “It really gave us another month of our lives back.”

Guy Drew of Guy Drew Vineyards near Cortez called the harvest “fast and furious.”

“Basically it was over in a month,” he said. “It didn’t even get into October, it was all over in September. I couldn’t go to Winefest this year because I was busy dealing with grapes.”

Caspari said the growing season started normally but a warmer-than-usual May and June pushed the crop ahead.

“We had bud break pretty much as normal but with May and June very warm and it just kept getting warmer,” Horst said. “We have never had a warmer year during our growing season, which is the first of May to the 30th of September. “So everything got ripe very early.”

Most grape varietals ripened two weeks to a month early, Caspari said. “I picked the grapes at my site (on Orchard Mesa) on the 22nd of August and I’ve never picked anything in August,” he said.

He said the crop overall was “pretty decent, probably a record for us quantity wise and maybe quality.”

But a continuous hot growing season isn't necessarily a good thing. Unrelenting hot weather has a drawback – the hot days build sugar in the grapes but winemakers want cool nights to develop the acids that balance sugars, tannins and alcohol.

Winemakers watch grapes as carefully as a mother watches her sleeping child. Grape maturity is monitored daily, and sometimes more often, as the grapes near the level of ripeness the winemaker is seeking.

“We didn’t get the cool nights of September like usual,” Drew said. “It was so hot, we couldn’t get the acids we needed and the while the sugars stayed high, the acids are low.”

A study by climatologists Greg Jones of the University of Oregon and Robert Davis of the University of Virginia indicated (and I'm paraphrasing greatly here) that in the last two decades, grapevines in Bordeaux have seen a longer growing period, which causes Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon varietals to have higher sugar-to-acid ratios, greater berry weights and a "greater potential wine quality."

However, sugars and acids develop at different rates, and hot weather can cause grapes to be phenologically ripe but not evenly ripe, with sugars and acids out of balance.

Plus, more sugars equate to higher alcohol content, one reason California wines tend to have higher alcohol than French or German wines, which don't get as ripe due to generally cooler growing conditions.

But even that is changing, as higher temperatures around the world already are having a hand in wine production.

Without the balancing crispness of acidity, white and red wines tend to be soft and dull – “flabby” is one term used – and in years such as this it’s not unusual for winemakers to augment the acidity by adding either tartaric acid or cream of tartar, both of which occur naturally in grapes (along with malic and citric acids).

Also, it was evident early in September that picking crews were going to be doing double duty – trying to get the last of the peaches off the trees while fielding calls from grape growers.

“The fruit from down here was good early but we weren’t able to pick it when it should have been picked,” Guy said. “Most of the fruit I buy from Grand Junction comes from (Bruce) Talbott but his crews can only do so much.

“When they are busy, even if you need it picked today, you aren’t going to get it done.”

COMMENTS

Please Login or Register to leave a comment.

As far as I know hot seasons are good for grapes because they can crop in and become sweeter. I read a paper in agriculture about it on this article writing services it was very informative for someone like me.

I’m glad grape harvest. I also like to drink alcohol. I’ve just back from Cambodia tour.

I was very pleased to find this site.I wanted to thank you for this great read!!
kính 3d lắp đặt camera

La gente ama comprare la migliore qualità, diversi replica orologio di moda Cartier fanno apprezzare le sue braccia. Molto probabilmente vuole anche rendere orologi di alta qualità per il coniuge, GHD a buon mercato fidanzata dritto, coetanei del bambino può essere relativo. Potrai eseguire nei fondi caldi.

Growing grapes might require a lot of work but a good season will make it worth it. Many growers go for additional plants in their backyards as well, you can find many to choose from on http://store.isons.com/berry-plants and they will make your summer even more beautiful.

Should there be an alternate enticing post you can impart next time, I’ll be without a doubt sitting tight for it.
Dragon City hack android

Thanks for creating the page! Im positive that it will be very popular. It has good and valuable content which is very rare these days.
visit site

This is a decent tips particularly to those new to blogosphere, short and precise data…  Thanks for imparting this one. An unquestionable requirement read article….
FotoDarek

Should there be another persuasive post you can share next time, I’ll be surely waiting for it.
revertir la diabetes una nueva forma de eliminar este problema

best astrologer in India is a famous Jyotish in India and offers top level astrology services all over the world on phone. Call Me Now +91-9920629501                     best astrologer

Regular visits here are the best way to thank you for your effort, which is the reason why I’m visiting the site everyday, looking for new, interesting info. Many, many thanks!
bankruptcyx

six sigma yellow belt certification I was actually captured with the piece of resources you have got here. Big thumbs up for making such wonderful blog page

You have done a great job. I will definitely dig it and personally recommend to my friends. I am confident they will be benefited from this site.
millionaire magnet is a great choice if you want to attract rich men

Should there be an alternate enticing post you can impart next time, I’ll be without a doubt sitting tight for it.             
personal trainer weight loss ny

I basically need to let you know that I am new to weblog and most likely loved this online journal website. Likely I’m going to bookmark your web journal . You totally have grand stories. Cheers for imparting to us your site.
sports nutrition shop

Mmm.. good to be here in your article or post, whatever, I think I should also work hard for my own website like I see some good and updated working in your site.
site

stunning, incredible, I was wondering how to cure skin inflammation regularly. furthermore discovered your site by google, took in a ton, now i’m a bit clear. I’ve bookmark your site furthermore include rss. keep us overhauled…
Crédits publics

It is imperative that we read blog post very carefully. I am already done it and find that this post is really amazing. - See more at:     
[url=http://www.sbipo2014results.com]http://www.sbipo2014results.com[/url]

This is an excellent post I seen thanks to share it. It is really what I wanted to see hope in future you will continue for sharing such a excellent post.Katie Barclay Columbia

If you have a website and want traffic from the search engines, you know that targeting the right keywords is critical to your success. keyword tool




Recent Posts
FINALLY! A budget-friendly week at the grocery store
By Julie Norman
Monday, September 29, 2014

He just rode away
By Richie Ann Ashcraft
Monday, September 29, 2014

Finally enough to bake a pie
By Penny Stine
Monday, September 29, 2014

Chill out – Saké flavors open when served chilled
By Dave Buchanan
Monday, September 29, 2014

Fall planting: spinach and garlic
By Penny Stine
Friday, September 26, 2014


TOP JOBS




THE DAILY SENTINEL
734 S. Seventh St.
Grand Junction, CO 81501
970-242-5050
Editions
Subscribe to print edition
E-edition
Advertisers
Sign in to your account
Information

© 2014 Grand Junction Media, Inc.
By using this site you agree to the Visitor Agreement and the Privacy Policy