Harvest this year commenced around 9th April and continued until 20th April when the last of the riesling grapes came off. Picking was strung out over that period, unlike most previous years when harvest was all over in a few days. With a constant threat of frosts, which would have meant immediate picking, it was good to allow the fruit to hang and benefit from the last days of ripening.
Morning teas were provided at Bald Hills as is always the case, and they consisted this year of hot sausages wrapped in bread with chutney or tomato sauce, washed down by tea or coffee. Hungry workers thoroughly enjoyed their short break and repast.
Interestingly the canopy of leaves which feed the grapes was largely still green at the time of harvest but the high levels of sugars (measured in brix), beautiful flavours and concern about the weather dictated harvest dates. The fruit may have continued to produce even higher levels of sugars if the weather had held and since sugar is converted into alcohol it might not have been a good idea!
Our wine is made now in Cromwell which is a 10 minute drive away, meaning that fruit is crushed very soon after picking while it is till fresh and full of flavour.
All fruit is beautifully clean, fully ripe and with very little bird damage. The prediction is for another crop of excellent wines of density and character for Bald Hills.