Local winemakers experience early grape harvest, resulting in lower quantity of higher quality grapes
SAN DIEGO – September 3, 2015 – The San Diego County Vintners Association (SDCVA) has reported an early grape harvest season in San Diego County, which is resulting in excellent quality in the grapes, but a decrease in quantity compared to recent years.
Grape harvest season typically takes place toward the end of the summer season and into fall, allowing cooler temperatures to slow the ripening process and keep grapes on the vine until fall. However, San Diego’s warmer weather over the past year has created one of the earliest harvests the region has seen.
“This is an early and unusual growing season, with some early grape varieties like Tempranillo having different clusters ripen at different times,” said San Diego County Vintners Association President Linda McWilliams, owner of San Pasqual Winery in La Mesa. “Regarding quantity, there is variation in different parts of the county – overall slightly down. However, the quality looks excellent.”
Additional members of the SDVCA, a non-profit association dedicated to supporting San Diego’s thriving viticulture and winemaking community, have reported similar experiences with their harvest.
“We’re about 10 percent down in our overall harvest,” explains Justin Mund, winemaker at Orfila Winery. “It has been a difficult weather year, so we’ve had to be very proactive in the vineyard to avoid issues with powdery mildew and rot. Having done so, I’m very happy with the quality.”
The SDCVA has also seen varying reports based on different regions of the County. Micole Moore, co-owner and winemaker at Ramona Ranch Winery and president of the Ramona Valley Vineyard Association, said, “In general, the quality looks great with excellent sugar and acid levels, although it can vary dramatically on a vineyard-to-vineyard basis. I’ve seen some issues with rot and mildew, but good vineyard managers are showing some good fruit.”
San Diego County is home to 115 wineries and vineyards, many of them first generation, award-winning winemakers and urban wineries reviving San Diego’s heritage as California’s first viticulture region. San Diego County has numerous microclimates and a complex terroir that enables vintners to produce an array of varietals across the region.
About the San Diego County Vintners Association
The SDVA is a non-profit association dedicated to supporting the San Diego viticulture and winemaking community, educating local wine enthusiasts and embracing sustainable agricultural practices in the county. To learn more visit www.sandiegowineries.org. Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.