Vintage 2018 has started!
It was an exciting week at the winery! Thursday saw the beginning of the 2018 harvest, or ‘vintage’ for Scotchmans Hill. The first of the grapes were picked for sparkling and it will be a busy few weeks from here on in to get the grapes off the vines at the optimum time. Generally the first grapes that are harvested are Chardonnay or Pinot Noir grapes used for making sparkling wine.
It is crucial to pick the grapes at the right time, deciding when the perfect timing is, is based on several variables; the most important process to test if the grapes are ready is measuring the level of sugar in the juice.
Our winemaker, Robin has so much experience he can do this just by tasting the grapes, but to make absolutely sure the timing is right, we use a device called a refractometer to find out the sugar levels.
All of the grapes on our vines are so close to being ready! Generally red wine grapes are harvested after the whites but we now have to closely monitor the weather as hot days, humidity and rain all play a part in influencing when the grapes will be picked. Here’s hoping the weather stays dry for perfect harvesting conditions.