Linden Update | November 2018

Free Form December

Winter slows the pace at Linden. After an intense and often stressful harvest season, we can now take time to get re-acquainted with our past vintages. For the last several years we have enjoyed sharing this process with all of you.

The tasting room is only open for six days during the entire month of December. And we will make the most of each and every one of them. For the weekends of December 1 & 2, 8 & 9, and 15 & 16 traditional tastings are abandoned in favor of a more whimsical, free flow tasting of past, present, and future bottlings.

Some of the highlights will include special pre-releases of the much anticipated 2017 whites, 2015 single vineyard reds, and lots of random older vintages.

In keeping with the free form theme, there will be no reservations nor will there be cellar tastings. Regular tasting fees ($10.00), hours (11:00 to 5:00), and restrictions (no groups larger than four) apply. Just a note for fellow introverts: Sundays and the last weekend (December 15 & 16) tend to be more laid back!

Terroir Project

The trials and tribulations of the 2018 growing season have consumed my attention, so it has been a while since I’ve written about Linden’s Terroir Project. In 2016 we removed several underperforming vineyard blocks from a slope with great, but unrealized potential. In April of this year it was replanted. The progress is being documented step by step until we have a glass of wine to share with you (perhaps 2022?).

A very wet 2018 kindled a growth never seen before in a one-year-old vineyard. Unabated rains afforded these young vines quite a lot of vim and vigor. I have to admit that it was very satisfying to see such healthy, active vines in mid-summer. But now I am more than a bit worried about the consequences of such exuberant growth.

The vines never stopped growing. They continued to produce new shoots and leaves right up to last week’s killing frost. Much of that new growth never had a chance to “harden off” or lignify making the vines very susceptible to freeze damage should the winter be a tough one. The tender graft unions at the base of the vines are particularly susceptible, so a sustained, thick insulating blanket of snow would be very welcome. Let it snow!


This one-year-old Cabernet Sauvignon vine has already established its trunk. Still visible is last year's grafting wax at bottom. This graft union, connecting the Cabernet scion to the Riperia rootstock is the vine's "weak link" that is tender and most susceptible to cold damage.