Monday, October 15, 2007

First Fall Frost/freeze

I'm posting this a bit late. We had the first significant frost/freeze in the Vineyard Friday Morning (10/12/2007)

There are still a couple of things to do in the vineyard before the snow flies. I need to fertilize the vines with some potash ... since low potassium is a big problem in the vineyard. I also need to bury any graft unions on the grafted vines.

Posts will definitely slow down until Spring when pruning starts in March. I will probably only post a few reports through the winter. I will probably post a Season summary and goals for next year in December.

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Maiden Voyage at Captain's Walk Winery

This past Friday I got to visit Captain's Walk Winery, the winery where my Foch grapes are being made into a wine. The winery just opened in spring of this year. It is housed in a gorgeous Victorian aged home in downtown Green Bay near the Fox River.

The winery is definitely a unique experience. The wine essence garden along the pathway to the winery was a unique idea. I definitely got the feel that the winery was very much about wine education.
Plaque near the essence garden.

Inside the winery you enter the receiving room, and just beyond you immediately see the production room, where the magic happens. I took a picture of fermenter #3 ... where the Foch grapes from my vineyard were just finishing their primary fermentation. The winery already had that wonderful winery smell from the fermentation. The wine in this lot will be made into a blush wine and named Maiden Voyage. They will only be making about 75 cases. The wine will be bottled in a very unique "ship shaped" bottle. They hope to release it very early next year.

SVV grapes fermenting in fermenter #3.

The tasting room is also a unique experience. The decor is as gorgeous as the rest of the winery. But what is really cool is the big square plexiglass covered hatch which allows you to look at the barrel/aging cellar. Very cool.

Well this is a vineyard blog .... so I want to update the vineyard status a bit. We've had as much rain in the last week as we have nearly had all summer. The last of the Saint Pepin was sold. All that remains is some LaCrosse. It's holding at about 18.5 brix, and has a lot of "bad" berries. I'll probably pick it in the next week, for my own use.New plantings

I also did an assessment of the new plantings. The Rose chafers and the drought has been hard on them. I planted 100 vines each of Frontenac, LaCrescent, and Prairie Star. I went through and looked for signs of life. Prairie Star fared the best, I only see one with no life signs. The Frontenac had 5 vines not make it. All in row 11? LaCrescent had it the worst ... I lost 24 out of the 100 planted. It's not unlikely to lose a few more over the winter. Note: last year, I never lost a single laCrescent vine.