Journal | Follow the 2018 Harvest | October 8, 2018
Journal | Follow the 2018 Harvest | September 24, 2018
Over and Out
It was a fortuitous finish of an otherwise dismal vintage. The Petit Manseng grape has grit. A seriously spiteful Mother Nature threw everything she had at these resilient vines, but they still gave us a harvest that will make some of the best wines of 2018.
Journal | Follow the 2018 Harvest | September 19, 2018
Back to the Cellar
All Linden’s red grapes have been harvested. We have a record amount of rosé fermenting in tanks but no red wines for 2018. It is a very eerie feeling to walk through an empty cellar that should be bustling with pump-overs and punch downs.
Journal | Follow the 2018 Harvest | September 15, 2018
This week we are harvesting all our red grapes. But we will not make any red wine. Growing and harvest conditions have been less than favorable for creating red wines that would make Linden proud. This is our first vintage (since 1987) that we have not produced red wine. Wine is truly made in the vineyard and there is no cellar magic that can change this.
Journal | Follow the 2018 Harvest | September 13, 2018
Yesterday we walked the vineyards, tasted grapes, gathered samples, and ran lab tests for the red grapes. And as has become our hourly ritual, we checked the weather forecast.
We then decided to buck up and face the music.
Journal | Follow the 2018 Harvest | September 12, 2018
Cavalry to the Rescue
Yesterday Team Linden was faced with the impossible task of harvesting eight tons of grapes from two different vineyard sites and four different blocks. The crop was ripe but beginning to show signs of degradation due to all the wet weather.
Journal | Follow the 2018 Harvest | September 10, 2018
Good News, Bad News
The good news is that the major impact of high winds and torrential rains from hurricane Florence may miss us. My biggest concern is power loss. We have some solar/battery backup, enough to run small pumps and water, but not enough to power large processing equipment and cooling.
Journal | Follow the 2018 Harvest | September 8, 2018
This week we will harvest most of our white grapes in anticipation of the arrival of hurricane Florence. We start at daybreak with Avenius Sauvignon Blanc and then head to Hardscrabble where the young vine Chardonnay will be picked. The week will be a continual cycle of picking and pressing.
Journal | Follow the 2018 Harvest | September 6, 2018
The cycle of harvest and crush is underway. Yesterday was a dizzying first day as we pressed out Boisseau Chardonnay, Boisseau Viognier, Hardscrabble Sauvignon Blanc, and Hardscrabble Semillon. It is quickly becoming evident that 2018 will become the vintage of “pretty” wines.
Journal | September 3, 2018
Off and Running
Wednesday, September 5, marked the first day of harvest for Linden Vineyards. We started at the warmer Boisseau Vineyards with Chardonnay and Viognier under sunny skies and hot temperatures. Considering the challenges of the 2018 growing season, we are quite pleased with the quality of the crop.
Journal | August 27, 2018
Our grapes are ripening, but slowly. There has been enough heat, but not too much sun. We have avoided most of the thunderstorms over the past several days.
Linden Update | August 2018
A Little Bit of Optimisim
Finally the weather is in our favor. I can’t remember the last time we went a full week without rain. The vines are finally settling down with green growth slowing.
New Releases | August 2018
This has been the wettest growing season I have ever experienced.
The New Website
For those of you who have an interest in following the progression of the 2018 vintage, I have been faithfully posting weekly updates in Hardscrabble Journal on Linden’s new web site.
Journal | August 20, 2018
Hardscrabble Red 2014
We felt this vintage needed more time to develop and patience rewarded us.
Avenius Chardonnay 2016
This wine is a great example of the expression of a cool site (Avenius) from a warm vintage (2016).
Journal | August 13, 2018
This week we will take the first sampling of Sauvignon Blanc grapes (always the first to ripen). Shari will run lab tests quantifying sugar, pH, and acid amounts. We will taste the juice for aroma and flavor. While harvest is still weeks away, this sampling and evaluation will give us a better idea as to when we might expect to start the vintage.
Journal | August 6, 2018
Where is that Canadian Cold Front?
In the debate of which growing season has been the most challenging, 2018 is starting to edge out 2003. We can’t seem to get a long enough dry spell to slow vine growth and give us a break. So far the clusters look good, but I can’t imagine that they will be able to hold on for too much longer if this stormy weather pattern persists.
Journal | July 30, 2018
Ready to Dry Out
Last week included disbelief, denial, and a reality check. After more than two months of record rains we felt that we should certainly be due for a change. Last week’s rains were salt on the wound.
Journal | July 23, 2018
Veraison has commenced. This is when the grapes turn color and start the ripening stage. So far only a few berries have colored. When 50% of the berries in any given block turn, the date is noted.
Journal | July 16, 2018
At Linden we practice palate-based winemaking. This means that our decisions are based primarily on taste rather than science or numbers. This works because we make wine from vineyards where we have grown and harvested the grapes for decades. There is a sense of what to expect, but always with a dash of surprise.
Journal | July 9, 2018
A More Relaxed Pace
The last three weeks of hot, dry weather have finally calmed the rate of vine growth. After a very intense two months of “green work’’, we finally have the vineyard canopy in good order.
Good Child, Bad Child
Thus far the rainy spring of vintage 2018 has produced vines of extreme vigor and unruly growth. I can’t remember the last time we spent so many days cutting out unwanted lateral shoots, leaves, tips, and/or suckers.