By. Neil Williamson, VWJ Editor
One of the joys of working in the Virginia wine industry is the rhythm of the growing season. July usually finds winemakers in their cellars bottling the last of their previous vintage white wines to make sure they have tank space for the fruit that is only now beginning to ripen on the vine.
Most Virginia wineries I talked to survived the recent Derecho with only minor crop damage (mainly hail). Had the power outages continued much longer, white wines in refrigerated jacket tanks may have been in jeopardy for those outposts without a three phase power generator.
In drier year, such as 2012, we also start to see “outside pressures” on the vineyards as the fruit begins to ripen. Last weekend, a baby bear managed to climb the deer fencing at Stone Mountain Vineyards to preview a portion of their Chardonnay harvest. An attentive guest snapped a photo of the cub that can be seen on the SMV Facebook page.
As we move into August, wine growers will break out their spooky one eyed balloons, netting, plastic owls, streamers and screamers all in an attempt to keep the birds from enjoying their hard work rather than you.
We got word this week that the reviewers at Wine Enthusiast were equally impressed with the Church Creek Stainless Steel Chardonnay we shipped to your earlier this year. They awarded the wine an 87 point rating. I am thrilled we were able to share this wine with our members.
As always, thank you for your membership and thank you for including me as a part of your wine journey.
Editor, Virginia Wine Journal
Chairman, VA Wine Club Tasting Panel