As we begin the third week in September, we are already weeks ahead of 2012’s beginning of harvest in the Russian River Valley. Vintners and growers in the Russian River Valley are very excited about the 2013 vintage and are anxious to taste the resulting wines. With consistently cool, foggy mornings, the Russian River Valley is well known for exceptional Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, but it also produces other amazing varietals, such as Syrah, Zinfandel and Sauvignon Blanc.
“The weather this year has cooperated very well and we haven’t seen a harvest this early in quite some time. I’ve been in the cellar for a week, making wine as fast as I can!” said Rod Berglund of Joseph Swan Vineyards.
John Balletto, Balletto Vineyards & Winery: “Harvest is going along very smoothly. We had a nice spike in the sugars over the last week and now the Russian River Valley fog has slowed things down - this is perfect weather. I believe it’s going to be a banner year!”
Shannon Donnell of Sonoma-Cutrer Vineyards: “The 2013 growing season has been near perfect. The weather has been cooperative, with no large swings, resulting in slow, even ripening of the fruit. We have been steadily picking Chardonnay and Pinot Noir for a little over two weeks now. The forecast is calling for mild weather, allowing optimal flavor development. We are excited about the quality of the 2013 vintage.”
“The grapes of the 2013 vintage are of exceptional quality,” says Saralee McClelland Kunde, “and we are looking forward to tasting the magic that is created between winemaker and grapegrower.”
About the Russian River Valley
The Russian River Valley American Viticultural Area (AVA) is located in the heart of Sonoma County, California, just fifty-five miles north of San Francisco. The seasonal fog and tempering effects of the ocean to our west give us an uncommonly long growing season, and creates ideal conditions for cool-climate-loving grape varieties, particularly Chardonnay and Pinot Noir.