The 2016 vintage has been a compressed vintage so far with the moderate, warm weather and high sun levels ripening all the grapes quickly and evenly. This week at Balgownie Estate in the Yarra Valley we had a large crew of pickers on board who very quickly hand harvested the remaining Chardonnay and also managed to pick all our Pinot Noir. With the ideal ripening conditions over the preceding weeks we have been able to pick our Pinot Noir with optimal levels of flavour and the ideal balance between acid and sugar levels.
At Balgownie Estate in Bendigo, this week has seen the beginning of the harvest of Cabernet Sauvignon. Traditionally Cabernet is one of the last grape varieties to be picked as it is a late ripening variety that requires abundant sun to get ideal flavour and ripeness. Winemaker Tony Winspear has been very happy with the Cabernet as it has been hand-picked with lovely intense fruit flavours. The Cabernet has joined the Shiraz and Merlot in the winery undergoing fermentation in open vats with daily hand plunging for a gentle extraction of fruit, flavour and tannin.