We harvested some Tocai and some Merlot before the weather turned bad Last Sunday. Everything looks great.
Rain is actually welcomed at this point because it had been SO DRY that maturation wasn’t advancing as quickly as it should have been considering the great weather. The vines were a little stressed from lack of water, and when vines stress, they go into a “survival mode” where available energy is diverted from maturation and the grapes are actually used as a source of energy themselves. Under severe conditions, the vine can use the grapes as a source of water, causing the berries to shrink…
We didn’t get that far, thank goodness.
2009 is still shaping up to be a great vintage. This rain is just what the doctor ordered. For the later whites and the rest of the reds to come in perfectly, the rain will have to stop and we’ll need just a little more warmth and sun.