Linden Update | August 2018
I haven’t written for a while. I was delaying, waiting for some good news concerning the growing season. This has been the wettest growing season I have ever experienced. Grapevines will grow with great abandon if given abundant access to water. The problem is that they forget that they need to direct some of their energy to ripening the fruit. They just want to make more leaves. Those of you who grow tomatoes know of what I speak.
Fragile is the word that best describes the state of our grapes, our vines, and our growers. The grapes are large and swollen making the clusters compact and very susceptible to bunch rots. The vines are disheveled and the leaves are a bit chlorotic. We growers are tired and discouraged, putting in long hours only to look back and start the hedging, weeding, and mowing cycle again and again and again.
There is some hope however. It comes with cool, dry, Canadian air. The vineyards desperately need to dry out. It is our only chance to salvage a respectable vintage. That is now happening and a bit of optimism is winking in the wings.
In my mind, the white wines have the best chance for a good vintage 2018. We will start harvest in two or three weeks. If we stay dry, it could result in some balanced wines. The same is true with Rosé. We have shifted our vine management to Rosé in many red grape parcels as we feel that for this vintage Rosé is more appropriate than attempting to make reds. Our best blocks of the Cabernets and Merlots are still dedicated to red wine as they are extremely well drained and the vines are in good balance.
The New Website of Linden Vineyards
For those of you who have an interest in following the progression of the vintage, I have been faithfully posting weekly updates in Hardscrabble Journal on Linden’s new web site.
Over the past 18 months we have been working very closely with Kevin Osborn and Anne-Catherine Fallen of Research & Design, Ltd. in Arlington, Virginia. They discovered Linden years ago as customers and have an acute understanding of who we are. Not only have they redesigned our site to make it more accessible, but they have used their curatorial experience to catalog scores of writings and hundreds of past Linden bottlings, going back to 1997. It is now easy to look up each of our wines — present or past — to read a complete description of its character and growing conditions. Our Wines.
The site was launched on May 17, 2018. We will have new features in the coming months.