Bud break – April 27th. About 2 weeks later than normal.
Bloom – Back to normal – last week of June.
Verasion – Last week of August
Potter’s Vineyard Estate Rosé of Pinot noir – September 24th
Potter’s Vineyard Estate Pinot noir – October 3rd
Konowac Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon – October 4th
Celilo Vineyards Chardonnay – October 5th
Winter came in like a lion for the 2017 vintage. There was lots of snow but also lots of ice and above average amounts of rain which delayed start of pruning. The abundant soil moisture made it hard to get into the fields to mulch the prunings and take care of the weeds. Thus 2017 will be remembered for the generous weed harvest, excessive suckering but probably more root growth and future bud health and development. The amount of early grass and weed growth pushed the vines to the edge of their stress threshold. To help the vines along we spent a lot of time hand weeding under the vines and added a pass with the rototiller to plow in the grass on every other row. Bud break was actually a bit later than normal for this area but the beautiful June weather gave the vines the sun they needed to grow rapidly and produce lots of flowers. Bloom came just a little later than previous years but about the normal time for our vineyard due to the nice weather (without hail or heavy winds) which led to a bountiful fruit set and some gorgeous young clusters. We were back to a normal October harvest in the northern Willamette Valley.
2017 has the makings of a classic Bergundian vintage with great acid, lower sugars (but lots of flavor), cool fruit picking, and a cool long fermentations.
Cheers from The Potter’s Vineyard!
Postcript. Wow! What a great cool fermentation. The cooler outside air helped to slow the start of fermentation and prevent a rapid buildup of heat. The fermenter temperatures started slow and slowly rose throughout the entire fermentation. This has resulted in some beautiful aromatics. It may take a few years to fully appreciate these wines but we are predicting that they could be very special!