Well, crush has come and gone and we are relieved. However, due to the very slow start in the spring, a late frost and a terrible September we only harvested half the fruit we’d normally pick! It’s a lean year for wine making. The ferment is going well though, a nice cool and long ferment on the Ortega. It should be a really nice fruity wine. I’m contemplating what to do with it though, should we go with a dry wine like we did in 2009 or should we make it a bit off-dry, a bit sweeter more like what we did in 2008. If we make it a bit sweeter it makes the wine more like a riesling or a gewurztraminer rather than a sauvignon blanc if we do it dry. Decisions, decisions. I’m also trying a few more things to round out the Black Crow a bit more. That’s the nice thing about being a small winery, we can definitely experiment. My challenge to myself is to try and make a nice medium body red wine out of the grapes that we can grow on Quadra. So far we have made some nice lighter bodied reds, the 2009 Black Crow is quite nice, goes well with pork, turkey, sockeye etc., but it is still lighter bodied. I think we are going to aggressively oak a part of the agria and dorn in new barrels this year and possibly sweeten up the wine near the end because residual sugar in wine tends to help with body. Also we are going to try malolactic fermentation to knock down the acidity a bit more.
On the farm front we are still harvesting from our garden: carrots, beets,chard, kale, potatoes, parsnips, some basil. Ben really wants to get a big greenhouse so we can start trying to get things going earlier in the season. Somehow we need to make this farm pay for itself! The exciting thing though is that we will definitely have a harvest next year because we are definitely able to buy our nets! yay! Finally. It will be nice to have some estate grown wine. The grapes we harvested this year were so bird pecked that we just threw them to the chickens.
The Jimmy K labels and the Black Crow labels are supposed to be printed up by the 8th of November so we should be able to start selling the wine soon after. Just in time for the Holiday Season. Well that’s an update for now. Will make an effort to actually do more as there has been some fun things we did participate in during the month of October.