In the business of growing grapes, veraison marks the moment when grapes transition from growth to ripening. We see it in our vineyards with the first flush of red in the green berries….and also across Facebook and Instagram as all our Barossa winery mates share news of the moment that heralds a 4 – 6 week ripening season before harvest.
The weather over the next month or so sets the tone for the quality of the vintage. In an ideal world, we’re looking for consistently warm days that promote steady, consistent ripening complemented by cool nights which help the fruit to retain natural acidity. The risk of extreme heat is ever present, but thankfully diminishes as we get beyond early February. The odd hot day doesn’t bother the vines too much, with healthy leaf canopies serving the role of a beach umbrella to protect the fruit. Gully breezes late in the afternoon also play a role in keeping things fresh. Summers in Barossa are typically warm and dry, with autumns maintaining warm days and crisp cool nights. These are prime conditions for allowing the fruit to slowly develop to a point where we’re tasting a perfect balance of flavour concentration and ripeness against a backdrop of good natural acidity.
So will this be a great vintage? Who knows!
So far so good, and everything we’re seeing as we walk the vineyard rows suggests we’re on the right track. The Barossa generally delivers the goods in weather terms from here on in, so we’re hopeful of a decent crop of some very, very good fruit.
Beyond that point, all care and responsibility for great wine lies entirely in my hands.
Cheers, Matt Reynolds – Chief Winemaker