That’s a wrap on Vintage 2023!
Our 21st Vintage got under way on Wednesday 8th February this year with the Muscat Petit a Grain Rouge, destined for Moscato. This is usually our first grape to be harvested, and it was again this year, only a few days later than in 2022. We thought the season was going to be slower than usual, due to the cooler spring, and milder summer temperatures, but it turned out to be almost on par. Both the Pignoletto and Arneis were harvested on the exact same dates as in 2022, the 16th and 17th February respectively. The second half of February was busy, with the Fiano, Dolcetto, Semillon and Sauvignon Blanc all coming into the winery on consecutive days. This made for some long days for Mark and Kieran, and lots of sunrises for the harvest crew.
Then as per usual we had what we call the mid vintage break, well it is for those picking. As the Cabernet Sauvignon wasn’t harvested until the 15th March, and then finally the Nebbiolo on 7th April on the eve of the Easter weekend. In between we picked a small quantity of Barbera as well from the Wildwater Vineyard.
Harvesting the grapes is just the beginning of the winemaking process. From de-stemming, to spending time on skins, different fermentations, pressing, barrel time and filtration; these processes commence the day the grapes are harvested and will continue for many weeks after. Winemaker Mark and assistant Kieran will still be working away in the winery over the next few months, tasting, checking and working on the wines. Typically the Nebbiolo spends up to 6 weeks on its skins, so it can be the end of June before it is pressed off and transferred to barrel.
Thank you to our Vintage 2023 Harvest Crew
A huge thanks to our 2023 harvest crew, the regulars – Bruce, Carol, Julie, Phil and Fran who this year were assisted by some other locals, Vicki, Ken, young Xavier, and brother-in-law DJ. This crew make all the difference to the quality of our wines, as they diligently weed out any not so good fruit. Our wines are very much hand made from beginning to end.
Overall Vintage 2023 has brought us in some exceptional grapes, with great flavours and in the right quantity too. We had very little disease pressure this season, and minimal impact from the weather. It was a lovely ripening season from December through until Easter. Our biggest issue this year was the lack of Marri flowers locally, thus netting the vines was extremely important on all our vineyards, as the bird pressure was high. You can look forward to some exceptional wines in the future years. Check out the gallery below for a few snapshots from this vintage.