August 30, 2014

Bootjack Cab Franc Diaries


Bootjack Cab Franc ready for some LXV TLC. Here is a vineyard report from Jason Yeager, Vineyard Manager at Niner



The year started out with some of the earliest bud break on record. That is because we had one of the warmest and driest winters on record. This also is an extension of the now 3 year drought that we have been experiencing. When you combine a winter with warmth and dryness it is the perfect combination to get the soils warmed to past 52 degrees which is precursor to bringing vines out of dormancy. The block where LXV Cab Franc is coming from is on sandy loam soils with a great deal of fractured rock in the subsoil. These soils naturally do not hold much water so bud break was very early here. The period between bud break and bloom was only 5 weeks. Usually it is 7 to 8 weeks. 



During bloom we experienced a very warm spell with gusty winds which discouraged setting of the flowers. Thus there was a great deal of shatter but the cluster that we had this year were abnormally large so this was a perfect situation. The clusters are very loose with lots of room for air and light penetration. This helps with overall flavor development and increases complexity of the wines. This year also has not seen a great deal of days with maximum temperature over 100 degrees but degree day evaluation has shown it to be the warmest since 1997. This has kept sugar development in check with flavor development since photosynthesis has not been arrested from high temperatures. This August has been one of the coolest I have ever seen and this will further keep sugars from accumulating too fast meaning more hang time for flavor development. This block is on its 5th leaf. This is the 3rd year we have received a crop here. Last year the wines were very impressive even though these vines are still very adolescent. We are hoping that this more mild weather profile continues through harvest. 2014 is looking to be one of Paso's finest in many years!

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About Jason Yeager: Jason completed his Viticulture and Enology degree at Napa Valley College in 1998. Shortly thereafter, 
he began work at Flora Springs, a well-known Napa Valley winery, as the vineyard manager. There he worked under the direction of Pat Garvey, Flora Springs co-founder and vineyard director, until he decided 
to migrate south to join Niner Wine Estates in early 2011.
Jason brings a lifetime of farming experience to Niner Wine Estates. He is responsible for the management of two very distinct vineyards totaling 195 acres. 

1 comment:

  1. This is first time that I have read the whole procedure of cropping for vine,haven't read about this before.Thanks for this informative article.

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