The elegance of the grape
The winter was mild, bringing warmth to the vines, but Lorenzo de Medici’s refrain from the Song of Bacchus was appropriate: “If you want happiness, take it, for tomorrow nothing’s sure”. It was miserly with rain, which often causes weakness in the vines in summer, so we were concerned about what treatments to use to keep them healthy.
Early spring brought the rain, allowing the vines to begin their normal development. Between mid-March and mid-April there was another cold spell and the rain became heavy but irregular. It continued on and off until the end of May, replenishing the ground water reserves for the summer.
The variable spring gave way to a hot, dry summer, with steady temperatures. Then, out of the blue, came sudden steep temperature drops, down to 15˚ below normal. The rain also returned, along with strong winds, which delayed the harvest well beyond its expected date.
In September there was a sudden cold snap before the Tramontana wind brought sufficient warmth for the grapes to ripen.
October was another warm month, with temperatures around 24˚, and the healthy grapes were harvested in the third week of the month and taken to the winery in small baskets.
2008: the elegance of the grape.
“Quant’è bella giovinezza che si fugge tuttavia!
Chi vuol essere lieto, sia, di doman non c’è certezza.”
“How beautiful youth is, though it still flees from us!
If you want happiness, take it, for tomorrow nothing’s sure.”
Refrain from the Song of Bacchus, composed by Lorenzo ‘the Magnificent’, probably in 1490.