David Coffaro Vineyard and Winery Winemaker's Diary

Week 36
September 3, 2000 to September 9, 2000 

Tuesday  September 5, 2000

With the football season starting and the U.S. Open Tennis occupying part of my time, I have to admit that I have been neglecting my diary. Kate and I actually went to a Raiders game yesterday and enjoyed one of the rare Oakland victories, but now it is back to reality. 

The Weather has turned warm again, so we will start harvesting again on Thursday. Brendan's sugar samples today showed no change from last week, but I am pretty sure we will show some increases by the time we harvest later this week. 

Our zinfandel fermentations are slowly warming up. I instructed Brendan to move our one ton fermenters out in the sun today to see if we can get more heat into them. I forgot to report that our final sugar readings showed over 24% brix (ripe enough) so I am interested to see how our next zin fermentations compare in taste after an extra week on the vine. Our sauv blanc in the tank is down to 3% while our barrel fermentations are very dry so I added some ML starter to them. Our acids are very high. Brendan wants to keep them high, but I would like to lower them a bit. We will see if the ML fermentation helps lower the total acid naturally---otherwise I will add (with Brendan's protest) some potassium carbonate to lower the acid. 

Wednesday  September 6, 2000   Low 42  High 96

Tennis ended early tonight---I am not a fan of Sampras. 

Yes we had a 54 degree temperature range today (42-96). This temperature range is really not unusual at any time of the summer. Of course it is rare that the minimum temperature during the summer months is a low of 42. Oh I forgot, it is not in the summer according to school. But actually Fall does not start officially until September 21.(22nd?). 

Well today we finally got a spike in temperature in our 3 zin fermentations to 92 degrees ( where we want it ). 

As I have said before, I thought our 2000 zin was ready to harvest last week, but I was swayed by Brendan (who was sorting the questionable bunches last week) that our vineyard could use another week. In the meantime we have had a real cold spell, including several sprinkles. What is interesting is that the wine we have made from last week will be very different from this week. In other words every day that we harvest will produce a different wine. It is so fascinating that there are so many variables whicht will contribute to a fermentation of our wines and I sure do not want to filter out those complexities. Yes Most wineries do filter to protect themselves, but I have always been a risk taker and refuse to filter. We did filter our sauv blancs last year, but have no plans to filter our reds. I know I am taking a chance for bacteria to form, but I love the complexity that is created by not filtering. 

Tomorrow, we will harvest our remaining zin from our vineyard ( I win out ). On Friday we will harvest the Lane vineyard. 

Thursday  September 7, 2000   Low 48  High 101

Yes, we had a 53 point range today and 54 yesterday. As usual no forecasters predicted this warming trend. Everyone predicted that we would be going into a cooling trend. I have to be fair!! We are farther away from the fog and thus slower to experience these trends, but the bottom line is that we were much hotter today. 

There were a number of important events that had an effect on our family today. 

  1. First of all I bought two Raiders season tickets (so no Sunday open house ). 
  2. We harvested 4.5 tons of zin today. 
  3. Our production is very low. A little more than last year. 
  4. I am starting to reassess our production estimates for the year, More on that tomorrow. 
  5. We decided to harvest the Lane zin and the last two tons of our zin tomorrow. 
  6. Wine.com is coming tomorrow to take harvest pictures. 
  7. We decided to press our first zin from last week. 
Tomorrow will be a long day!!!

On August 29 we added some 2000 Harvest photos you might want to look at.


Home | Read | Diary | Public Forum | Tell Us What You Think of Our Diary! | Last Week | Next Week