Sauvignon Blanc 'Napa Valley', Accendo
2017 in Napa Valley began with generous rains fed by ‘atmospheric rivers’ that broke the long-running drought and brought rainfall totals to 1-1/2 times average in most locations. The saturating rains created challenges for farmers trying to get into the vineyards to finish pruning, and budbreak was later than normal, but by May, warmer and drier weather allowed a good fruit set of small grape clusters. Summer months were characterized by warm temperatures and low humidity, and with veraison finishing in late July, the grapes continued to ripen for another month, although interrupted by extreme heat spikes in late August and in early September.
Our white grape harvest began on August 22nd with Sauvignon Musque and continued into early September with Sauvignon Blanc and Semillon, finishing on September 6th. All the grapes were hand-harvested in the cool morning hours and were brought to the winery for whole cluster pressing. The wine was fermented in new and used French oak barrels and stainless steel drums, aged sur lie and bottled on June 27, 2018.
It should be noted that the defining events of the 2017 harvest began on October 8th, when horrific forest fires raged in the mountains surrounding Napa and Sonoma Valleys for a week. Although most grapes had been harvested by that date (Accendo’s last harvest date was October 7th, so we avoided any smoke damage to our white or red grapes), the fires wiped out thousands of homes and one Napa winery, smoke-laden air tainted some of the fruit still hanging in vineyards, and destruction
ran into the hundreds of millions of dollars in Wine Country. A year and a half later, rebuilding efforts are ongoing.
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