Learning, tasting & maintaining the 2017 Vintage
We had 2 dozen groups come up for racking and pruning over Queen’s Birthday weekend and even more over the past few weekends. President Brian has been hosting pruning workshops, teaching our Citizens how aggressive you need to be when pruning, the correlation between the pruning now and the yield next year. They say to ask your worst enemy to prune your roses and the same is true for vineyards.
President-Elect Spencer and Secretary of State Janet took our Citizens through racking their wines. This year racking was made easier through our purchase of an attachment that goes on top of the demijohns and connects to the Enolmatic machine we use to bottle our beer and Rent-A-Row wines. Its creates a vacuum within the demijohn, pumping up the wine out of the old demijohn leaving the lees (dead yeast cells) and any other sediment carried over from pressing.
Most importantly, this gave everyone the opportunity to taste their wines, with many Citizens surprised at how good the wines are tasting already. The wines were last tasted during pressing when they were still fermenting and had a very sweet, fruity and acidic taste. After their tasting our Citizen Winemakers decided on how much oak they wanted to add to their maturing wines. The oak, toasted French oak blocks (off-cuts of barrels) added will add some length to the wine and balance out some of the astringency from the natural Shiraz tannins.
It was great seeing all our Citizens again and to share the maintenance, pruning and racking stage with them. Those citizens that joined us over the long weekend then enjoyed a few beers and wines over the open fires, as well as the delicious American BBQ and tasted our 2015 vintage.