Hot and uneventful is how we would describe the 2014 growing season. We began with a mild late winter, rolling into a pleasant warm spring with very few frost events. Bud break occurred about the 10th of April, a little early but not unusual Heat built quickly with a much warmer than average late spring and stayed hot into mid-September. This set us up to declare 2014 the hottest vintage in our 30+ years of farming along the Snake River. Our white grape harvest began on September 10th, just as the heat of summer was transitioning to a mild fall and by November 10th the last of the red fruit was in the door. Winter came charging in and on November 15th the temperature had dipped into the low double digits and we were harvesting frozen orbs of Gewurztraminer for Ice Wine.
2012 Renwood Amador Ice, Ice Wine, Amador County 375 mL
Manufacturer: Renwood Winery
The vintage of 2012 had more of a normal weather pattern. Unlike 2010 and 2011, the harvest proceeded without any significant rainfall. There had been fears of another short harvest due to cool weather in the critical months of April and May 2011 when bud development for the next year occurs. We need not have worried as a large crop was forthcoming. Many growers had 20 to 30% more fruit than their averages and much higher than in 2010 and 2011. Still there was plenty of heat to ripen this crop and a long enough season to get everything picked and through fermentation.