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Washington Grapes Making for Tardy Wine


Grapes You may or may not have heard that while record temperatures and wild weather plagued a good part of the United States this year, Washington State had an uneventful summer; in fact it was downright unpredictable.

Due to a lack of late summer sun, tomatoes are green and crops weren’t plentiful but the real story here is that the grapes at vineyards across the state have yet to ripen. With nearly 700 wineries in Washington State, vintners are patiently waiting and tending to their vines waiting for harvest to arrive, which many are guessing will drive a mad rush to get the grapes off the vines and into cellars before the inclement weather really begins.

Chris Sparkman of Sparkman Cellars is hoping the grapes will be ready in a weeks time – “Our suspicion is we will be 24/7 for about three weeks, it’s probably all going to happen at once,” he said.

Some wine observers are wondering if this year’s wild weather will end up with a vintage to be remembered as the delays may have developed perfect conditions for some really good wines. We’ll know in the months and years to come if 2010 will be a year to be remembered for some really good wine.


  1. Brian Wing | Friday, September 17, 2010

    I’ve been trying to keep tabs on the local Sonoma County scene all year. We had late rain in spring and similar “uncanny” cool weather all summer.

    Here’s a couple of posts I put together documenting the weather this season, and I’ll be doing a follow up piece post harvest to see what the effects have been on this year’s vintage.

    Spring Rain:http://norcalwingman.com/2010/05/27/what-happens-when-grapes-get-wet-feet/
    Summer Cold: http://norcalwingman.com/2010/08/03/what-good-is-a-bunch-of-cold-grapes/

    We’re all crossing our fingers down here since there’s rain in the forecast for the weekend and we’ve only just started harvesting the whites (maybe some pinots)!

    Great post BTW
    Brian Wing

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