Tony, sorting crushed fruit

It looks like tonight is going to get pretty cool. Forecast is calling for a low of 47F, and while that is a long way from ‘cold’, it is certainly cooler than we have seen in a while. Fall really is just around the corner. I both love and hate this time of year. It is nice to get a break from the heat, but it also means winter is just around the corner. Spring and summer are my favorite times of the year, so the next couple of quarters are [by definition, I suppose] my least favorite times.

Our 2014 crush is in the books. We only have a tank of Sangiovese rosé and one bin of fruit still fermenting. The bin is a co-fermentation of our 2014 Petit Verdot and Montepulciano. Fruit production this year was off. Our year/year production is down about 30% overall, plus we lost our Pinot Gris from 2013. Last year, total crush was about 16.5 tons, or ~1000 cases. This year, total crush was about 9 tons, or ~650 cases. We never like to back up, but that is the way it is sometimes with farming.

This growing season has not been quite as cool as last year, but it has not been a particularly warm season either. Like 2013, we have only had one day of 90+ temperatures. It has not been as wet as 2013, but one could not say it has been a ‘dry’ year either. I think our fruit reduction is related to weather at flowering. It was overcast and cool all during that time, and fruit set was impaired. That is my theory, anyway, and I am sticking with it! The other growers with whom we work had similar reductions in production this year, so it was something beyond our influence only.

Last weekend, we participated in our third annual ASAP Farm Tour. It was a great weekend for us, and we are proud to participate in this annual event. Thank you to everyone that ventured our way, and to all of the folks that participated and supported ASAP Connections. Thank you to the folks at ASAP for all that you do to support local agriculture.

One last thought: Last Saturday was also a fund-raising evening for a sweet little girl named Olivia. Olivia is six now, but when she was less than a year old, she had a heart transplant. Well, Olivia’s little body is rejecting the transplanted heart, and it appears she is going to have to have another. Needless to say, this is an extremely challenging time for her mama and daddy, emotionally, physically and financially. If you are reading this, I would ask that you skip a latte or after-dinner drink one day this week, and make a donation to help the Landreth family. Olivia’s aunt [her mother’s sister] set up a gofundme campaign. You can find it here. Thank you for whatever you can do.