Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Summer in the Vineyard

On the Way to Harvest

To everything there is a season—the cyclical passage of time that marks the transition from one stage to another—and in Paso Robles Wine Country summer in the vineyard is an exceptionally important time in the winemaking process. Of course, when most people think of summer in the vineyard, they more than likely envision weddings, graduations—maybe, even a milestone birthday celebration—and while it’s true enough that all of these events are taking place throughout Paso Robles, behind the scenes, nature is hard at work and the vineyard is moving through an important cycle in what, in just a few months, will culminate in the harvesting of the grapes.

There are a number of events that take place in the vineyard during the months of June, July and August, including:

  •         The vines begin to flower, eventually producing clusters of grapes
  •          The canopy continues to grow and canopy management becomes increasingly more important
  •          As the grapes grow and mature, they begin to develop their coloring (variations depend on the varietals)
  •          As the summer heat increases, the grapes soak up the heat, which increases the sugars and helps the fruit ripen—all of which sets the stage for harvest
  •          By July, flowering is usually complete and the vineyard manager has a clearer understanding of the potential crop size.

Every vineyard is unique with a complexity of variations that need to be understood in the production of wine. No matter where a vineyard is located, there is a natural and cyclical process to the growing season and certain practices that are undertaken at each step. However, each vineyard is unique in the soil composition, amount of sun exposure and water, along with other aspects of climate. How each of these variants is managed, and to some extent, controlled, is the artistry of wine making. Paso Robles Wine Country has many unique AVA’s and varietals, which adds to the fun of exploring and experiencing wines from our region.

You could spend years making your way to the well-over 200 wineries in the area and tasting each wine produced, or, as a member of The Paso Robles Wine Club, you could relax and enjoy regular shipments of some of the most unique and interesting wines from California’s Central Coast—all without leaving the comfort of your home. Membership is free and there are a number of shipments to choose from, but no matter which you select, you can be assured that you'll enjoy learning more about the unique vineyards in the Paso Robles Wine Region as well as tasting many unique and hard to find wines.


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