“Oh, the summer night, Has a smile of light, And she sits on a sapphire throne.” ― Bryan Procter ― So, it’s been a few weeks! I hope the season has been treating you well. I know many of you have been catching up on a bit of vacation before harvest. Tasting rooms have been busy and, even with a
We can never stop asking “Where are we going?” If you stop and think about how many of your conversations, especially around our work in the wine industry, focus on this very question. And there’s conflict in the asking. Should we go here or there? Is the answer in the past, a sign we passed along the way, or is it
One night, the soul of wine was singing in the flask: “O man, dear disinherited! to you I sing This song full of light and of brotherhood From my prison of glass with its scarlet wax seals. … For I feel a boundless joy when I flow Down the throat of a man worn out by his labor; His warm
There have been a couple of excellent pieces on the famous wine educator Kevin Zraly. Zraly played a critical role in the world-famous World Trade Center restaurant “Windows on the World”, and he has had as big an impact on wine education around the world as anyone alive. Last week I shared Eric Asimov’s excellent article on Zraly, and Mike
I recently re-read a favourite essay of mine by the author Paul Kingsnorth. (I’d also highly recommend his and enthralling novel The Wake, written in an ‘updated’ Old English. It’s a wonderful novel to read aloud). The title is of course controversial. But Paul isn’t anti-environment, he has instead become anti-environment movement. This is, after all, a man who taught
The American Society for Eonology and Viticulture put out a great piece on the challenges for implementing precision viticulture. “Precision viticulture” (PV) is the use of technology or techniques that increase grape yield or quality while reducing environmental impact. It’s new cm-accurate GPSs, UAVs, moisture sensors, etc. This new technology means we no longer must treat vineyards as a homogenous block.
There are problems with plant tissue sampling. The big issue: nutrient concentration is not consistent across the petiole, is not consistent between nodes, and is not consistent between cultivars. For example, the middle segment of petioles consistently had the lowest segment of nutrients – other than manganese which had the highest. Perhaps because of the role manganese plays in photosynthesis?
Are we fooling ourselves with wine quality? Marcus Ansems, over at Daydreamer Wines, had a great Instagram post on wine quality. I have high respect for Marcus, for his work and knowledge, as well as the quality wine he’s producing from a difficult site. Marcus summarizes the traditional view of wine quality: How typical is it? ie. does a Bordeaux
In our weekly newsletter I shared a study that has been making the rounds everywhere. It apparently shows robust data that organic and biodynamic wines score higher than conventional wines – but sustainable wines score no higher than conventional. I mentioned that I hadn’t had time to look at the data in depth and wasn’t vouching for it. Well, I’m
Note: This article is based on a document that I created for our clients as an easy reference after the very bad winter of 2019. It combines practices in the Okangan and other regions as well as up-to-date research on vine cold hardiness. With increased seasonal variability with climate change, the very challenging winter of 2019 (extremely warm January followed by