Big Rick Stuart
Swift, Uneventful Sonoma County Winegrape Harvest Is A Welcome Change And May Signal Return Of Marke
Swift, Uneventful Sonoma County Winegrape Harvest Is A Welcome Change And May Signal Return Of Market Balance
Hopes for Long, Wet Winter Follow Near Perfect Growing Year
Grape growers around the county are breathing a sigh of relief as the 2021 harvest season closes out this week, blessed by Mother Nature after the past few challenging years. In a year best described as a "cold start to a warm, fast finish," reports from throughout Sonoma County indicate that the harvest was a little early, the grape yield appears to be slightly lighter to average yet, the 2021 crop will be viewed as an excellent vintage. Equally encouraging is that the winegrape market is in much better balance than in past years.
This year's crop was a little lighter due to a variety of water conservation efforts growers implemented this season to limit water use. This was true across the county and among all varieties.
"Everyone is relieved to get this harvest completed and the quality of this year's vintage appears to be outstanding with intense flavor profiles," said Mark Sanchietti, a fourth-generation farmer from West Sonoma County and chairman of the Sonoma County Winegrape Growers. He added, "Given that we are farmers, as soon as we drop off the fruit at the winery, we immediately start focusing on the next vintage and hoping for a wet winter to end the drought."