Week One: A great team and focus on Chardonnay
A beautiful cool (10⁰C), but sunny morning greeted our team of pickers in the Chardonnay vineyards today. These vineyards belong to one of our superstar local growers, Andrew Toomey and our Best’s former winemaker Adam Wadewitz. The fruit looks great with lovely varietal flavours and zesty acidity. The grapes will be lightly crushed and whole bunch pressed into tank and the juice allow to settle for a few days before racking to barrels for fermentation.
Our team in the winery of Jamie, Leanne, Andy, Simon, Penny and myself are aided this year by Miranda from Holland who has just finished working in Burgundy, France and Haydn from Melbourne who has been in the Napa Valley, USA until last month. Miranda and Haydn have been out in the vineyard this morning helping pick the Chardonnay.
All the stainless steel is gleaming and we are set to go. Although we have fruit arriving this afternoon, the team at Best’s are not ones for standing around so they have managed to bottle two lots of wine for some local producers this morning. Looking at the sampling data and the vines in the vineyard it appears we are going to have a very busy vintage with a lot of the Shiraz coming in at the same time as the Riesling. It is a good thing we have a great team this year.
Tomorrow the pickers will be harvesting the Pinot Meunier and then the Pinot Noir with maybe a little bit of Shiraz next week. The Shiraz especially looks good this year so if the weather holds we should be able to make something very drinkable from this variety…. I think I just heard a truck full of grapes pull up, so time for me to go…