Bottoms Up

Beer and wine in the Bay Area and beyond

Harvest starts in Livermore Valley at Retzlaff

By Jessica Yadegaran
Tuesday, September 1st, 2009 at 3:12 pm in Corkheads.

Harvest began early this morning in the Livermore Valley, where the staff at Retzlaff Vineyards, the only certified organic vineyard in the Livermore Valley AVA, began picking and crushing Sauvignon Blanc grapes.

Harvest at Retzlaff Vineyards

In the below photo, tasting room manager Connie Vandevanter watches as freshly picked Sauvignon Blanc grapes are dumped into the de-stemmer/crusher at Retzlaff Winery.  The low, orange box on the right contains grape stems, skins and seeds, which are returned to the vineyard as fertilizer.

Harvest at Retzlaff Vineyards

Sparkling houses such as Mumm began harvesting as early as Aug. 14. Winemakers in the Napa Valley, much like Livermore, have reported good things about quality this year, thanks to mild weather and even ripening throughout the season. Yields are average to slightly above average. Luckily, according to a post on the Yountville Appellations’ harvest blog including comments from Julie Nord of Nord Vineyards, none of the vines still hanging with fruit seemed troubled by Saturday’s heat spike – Napa hit 106 degrees. But they are keeping an eye on the developing hurricane in Mexico. Could mean unexpected rains for us.

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  • jason

    recently had Retzlaff, and the Chard in particular, recommended to me. Need to pay them a visit soon…