Spell Estate Winemaker Notes-2017 Vintage

by Spell Estate Wines, Tastemakers in Residence

Winemaker notes on the 2017 vintage:  

The 2017 vintage was a year for the record books.  The winter of 2016/2017 was one of the wettest in history.  With nearly 60 inches of rain falling during the winter of 2016/2017 the drought was essentially over.  Bud break began in early March after a stretch of warm weather.  With the replenished aquifers and full reservoirs, vine vigor was the primary focus at the beginning of the growing season. To combat vigor early on, cover crops were maintained longer and extra canes were allowed to push.  This seasonably warm weather continued through bloom which produced a healthy set.  The abundance of fruit was a relief to growers who had seen a string of below normal crop harvests. 

On October 8th the devastating wild fires broke out and raged through Sonoma and Napa counties for nearly two weeks becoming the most devastating fire in state history.  The fires will be the event everyone remembers but in reality had very little impact on the quality of the vintage, as only a small percentage of grapes had not been harvested when the fires broke out.  
The 2017 vintage produced wines of remarkable quality.   Expressive aromatics are highlighted by deep, concentrated flavors and soft contours.  These wines show great promise for those who wish to lay a handful of bottles aside for a later date. 

 - Andrew Berge