The Green Harvest at Bodegas Santalba, August 26, 2012
We just got word from Bodegas Santalba that the harvest in Rioja Alta has not yet started, as it normally begins during the first week of October, but that the pre-harvest forecast is in. Thanks Roberto!
"The harvest forecast in the Denominacion de Origen Calificada Rioja this year presents a lower quantity than last year's, because the soils have a lower fertility and therefore less production. In early June started a period of drought that still continues, and [this] together with the high temperatures of August in Rioja have reduced the yields of the crops, compared to previous years, but the quality of this vintage looks extraordinary due to the water stress and the perfect conditions of the plants. However, there still remains a month and a half to start the harvest, and the weather during the period is crucial; [the harvest] will depend upon whether it rains or not.
We forecast that we will have a long harvest and will have to start with the vineyards in the lower altitude with the higher sun exposure [where there is] earlier ripening, and that it will be a very staggered harvest. More than a month ago the veraison of the grapes began, and the sugar levels, polyphenols and color parameters of the grapes are developing excellently, rising continuously.
To ensure the quality of the grapes, we performed last week a green harvest, removing a percentage of bunches of grapes, leaving on the plant the best ones to assure a better quality ripening.
We expect to start our harvest at Santalba around the first week of October with Ermita white VIURA.
Stay tuned for the evolution of the vineyards and harvest..."