Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Wine making 2012

Here is a vat of fermenting cabernet sauvignon, our wine for 2012.
Even though we have 100 shiraz vines here, we haven't been able to use any of the grapes for three seasons. Too wet, and the grapes have succumbed to fungus. Meanwhile, our 20 or so chambourcin vines go ok in the wet, but produce too few grapes to do anything meaningful with them. We just eat them and give them away as table grapes.
Lesson for new players: don't grow shiraz in a humid climate. It just doesn't work.
While we procrastinate over what to do with 100 shiraz vines, we've been buying grapes for the last three seasons. In 2010, we made grenache shiraz mouvedre known in the wine trade as GSM. Last year we bought in Merlot. This year its cabernet sauvignon. Action Man, chief winemaker (I am the sidekick and critic), reckons it is the best wine he has made yet. All the readings have been textbook, but by the main reading ie. tasting, I would have to agree with him.
Pressing was on Saturday and AM had a few people over as an audience. Fortunately, because he had a major back spasm during the process and the audience became the winemakers that day at least. Since AM has been dubbed Inaction Man, as he has been literally laid low.


africanaussie said...

sorry to hear action man is out of action. Making wine sounds like such a an exciting thing to do! when you are working with the weather though things can get touchy.

Libby said...

Oh dear. Hope action man isn't out of action for too long :-(. Bad backs are the worst.

Winemaking-Equipment.com said...

Fungus the three seasons. That sounds absolutely devastating. I'm glad to hear that you are still going strong.


dino veritas said...

Hi Paola, stumbled across your blog, very interesting.
I grow about 140 vines in my backyard at Newcastle, a mad mixture of shiraz, chambourcin, lambrusco, nero d’avola, montepulciano, sangiovese & touriga. Oldest vines are 4 years age.
We had a wet and cold summer too, a bad year for powdery mildew and bunch rot, I only picked chambourcin and lambrusco. We will spray for botrytis this year. However, I got 36 litres from 9 chambourcin vines, probably a bit too much. We bought some grapes too.
We entered two amateur wine shows last year and won several bronzes and a silver.
Dino Veritas