In October of 2014, we were finishing up the harvest in beautiful 70 degree weather. Then, barely two weeks later on November 14th, the temperatures on our vineyards plunged to minus 4 degrees. The entire region and parts of the Northwest experienced the extreme temperatures, and many vineyards were hit. Red varieties were especially hit hard – we lost around 30% of our reds.
Now here we are in July and we’ve just had a record 10 days of 100 plus degrees. While it’s too early to tell the amount of damage, we’ve had berry shriveling in the past from these kinds of temperatures. It certainly makes for an interesting summer! With all the evidence pointing towards more incidents of extreme climate variance coming down the pipe, we’re changing our practices to adapt.
On the positive side, light crops with small berries can develop more intense flavors. Let’s hope that’s what we see this year!