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Winemaking starts in the vineyards, and here we strive to manage the quality and flavor of the grapes so that they exhibit all the qualities and complexities we are looking for. By controlling the entire process from “Vine to Cork” we are able to carefully focus on the vineyard practices and attributes that will produce the most distinctive and elegant wines. Our philosophy in the vineyard begins with a “Sustainable” approach to managing vineyard pests and diseases. We are committed to minimize our use of fossil fuels and maximize the use of organic and biodegradable products. We are always evaluating our “carbon footprint”, to promote a complex vineyard environment with diverse habitat and species and reduce any impact from our farming on the local environment.
In the vineyard we know that the essential element of grape quality is to balance the ratio of green growth – leaves and shoots- with the amount of fruit per shoot and cluster per vine. This “vine balance” will determine the overall flavor profile, maturity and acid balance of the grapes at harvest. During the growing season we train and manage shoot growth so that all leaves intercept light without overly shading the fruit. This involves carefully “suckering” (removing shoots) and “cluster thinning” (removing grape clusters) to achieve this ideal balance. These practices not only improve grape quality but also help to open up the canopy for better air circulation which provide better temperature and humidity management around the clusters, reducing excessive heat and minimizing mildew and other diseases so that we can reduce our spray applications and materials.