The rain is now falling steadily and the temperatures are struggling to reach 60º F. Hard to believe that less than a week ago we were enjoying the tail end of almost 3 weeks of warm weather with temperatures in the low 80’s. Now it feels like fall. The leaves turned color weeks ago and are now falling to the ground with the rain. The only consolation to bad weather this time of year is that the cellar is filled with new wines of outstanding quality.
We harvested our last fruit on the 6 th of October. The last few days of harvest saw the white wines arrive at the winery: Pinot Gris from the Wahle Vineyard and Five Mountains Vineyard, Riesling from Vigna Giovanni and Chardonnay from the Eyrie Vineyard. These were gently whole cluster pressed into settling tanks for an overnight clarification before being racked into new stainless steel barrels for their fermentations. Bergström Wines has moved away from older French oak barrels for white wine fermentation and will now do all of our white wines in stainless steel vessels. This is in an effort to keep our wines fresh and fruit driven.
We are excited to be working with Chardonnay from the Eyrie Vineyard this year. After not releasing a Chardonnay in 2003 because of its elevated alcohol, we have switched gears and are now focusing on a higher acid, lower alcohol, stainless steel fermented chardonnay from vines planted in 1967. This wine will be slowly fermented and aged on its lees for up to 2 years before its bottling where it will again be aged before its first release sometime in the next 3-4 years. Our goal is to create an ageable chardonnay from Oregon , one that is focused around acidity (not oak) and will pair well with the local restaurant fare.
After the white wines were in barrel we harvested our last Pinot Noirs of the vintage. Bishop Creek, a new vineyard for Bergström Wines this year, came in right before the older vines of the Hyland Vineyard.
As I write this note, we have close to 60 barrels filled from earlier fermentations now resting quietly in one corner of the winery building: Shea block 5, Shea Oak Block, Bergström 4-acre block, Bergström 115 block, Palmer Creek 115/Pommard. Today we are preparing to press out several fermentations including: Bergstrom Pommard block, Bergström Wadenswil block, de Lancellotti front block and de Lancellotti back block. We still have upwards of 15 tanks actively fermenting including a few which have only begun their fermentations.
Next harvest journal will see the completion of the vintage with a first take on wine quality lot by lot and potentially insight into the blends and single vineyard wines of 2004. Until then…. Stay warm and dry.
10/19/2004 – Showers
Wind: NE at 8mph