Studying science has helped me focus on details, noting all things involved and then I treat every harvest of every varietal the same way. It starts when I visit the vineyards–before actual harvest–to get a feel for that new year, talk with the grower about any concerns, examine the soil, and collect rocks.analyzing the outcome. My many years repeating protocols conditioned me to a lab notebook, where every experiment was written out step by step. The day of harvest I note the birthday of the wine, what the weather was like, how the fruit looked and tasted, what time it came in, and basic chemistry readings like pH and TA.
Then I think about techniques such as how much whole-cluster fruit was used, what kind of vessel the grapes were fermented in, and how long the fermentation continued. I note what the must smelled like, whether we did punchdowns, footstomps or pumpovers, what day we pressed, and whether the wine went to tank or to barrel.
I also note what music I am listening to in the cellar and how I felt that day. I consult the biodynamic calendar to see whether is it a leaf, root, flower or fruit day. All of these are important in the evolution of the wine.
Check out Kristie’s music and wine pairings here. >
Every three weeks, I taste the wines and continue to make detailed notes. Before the next harvest, I review my wine notebook to assess what I may want to do differently. Every year is another shot at making the best wine from that vineyard.