Quite a bit earlier than we hoped to we’ll have to harvest he Regent grapes for our first natural red wine. It was Sunday when Oskar and Melanie joined me for a vineyard check where we had the opportunity to make an appropriate family picture.
I was fairly proud afterwards comparing the test results of our juice with the regular one – quite a bit better (more sugar less acid), handwork pays off. I did see that the parcel I hadn’t worked on started to rot already. The next morning we went back with a vineyard expert, my father and our winemaker and the rot had started progressing. Not that great. Our parcel still looks pretty good but if you don’t want to use any sulphur rot is one of your worst enemies.
The wine probably won’t have enough sugar to ferment enough alcohol. Which means we might have to add some. Every additive is one too much and I hate agreeing to it but better some sugar (there won’t be any left in the wine – it’s “just” to artificially increase the alcohol level) than sulphur. And more rot would have made sulphur free impossible. So tomorrow morning we will go out and get the grapes! There are a few grape boxes on our trailer, scissors and buckets as well. We’ll also get some dry ice to cool down the grapes and produce some carbon dioxide – not having worked without sulphur before we’re really scared of oxidation so let’s rather be safe than sorry.
Weather looks good now so harvest will be fun – we’ll keep you posted with what happens to the grapes next!