Journal | September 17, 2016
Today we crush and press the old vine Hardscrabble Chardonnay. This is the fifth vintage in a row for an exceptional Chardonnay harvest. Maybe exceptional has become the norm? After more than three decades of growing chardonnay here, I’m feeling like this is Hardscrabble’s white signature grape. Over the past couple of years we have been planting new blocks on slopes that have great potential. After spending most of my career on trial, error, and experimentation it is rewarding to have a more focused path.
This more or less marks the half way point of vintage 2016. It has been a very compressed harvest, but not frenetic. The pace has been even, calm, and borderline routine. Lack of rain is the main reason. We are taking a break tomorrow, not just to refresh the body (sleep), but to clear the head. Fatigued winemakers can make costly mistakes. Thus far we have not only avoided mistakes, but have made very good picking decisions. In any vintage there are certain calls made that, in hindsight, one questions. That hasn’t happened yet.