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CDrew

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A bit late. I got home from Alaska on 9/11 at midnight and the next day was picking Syrah and Sangiovese. THat's been working a week and as of today the Syrah and Sangiovese are in Carboys-All my carboys are in use. So 23ish gallons of each are waiting to settle and will siphon off the good wine tomorrow.

Today 9/19 we picked Primitivo near Auburn California and had a great time. Even the wife participated. We were aiming for 300 pounds of primitivo but likely have more like 400 pounds.

So for those interested, there are 24 gallons of Syrah, 23 gallons of Sangiovese, and now 400 pounds of Primitivo underway. It's been a chaotic week, but things are settling down and wine making is underway for 2020.

For the record, the syrah (25 Brix)was corrected with 1.5 gm/L of Tartaric acid, the Sangiovese(24 brix) needed 0.5gm/L tartaric, and the Primitivo picked today was pH 3.6, 25 Brix, and 6.8 TA. I did not make any additions/corrections.

I totally missed out on meeting @crushday as I was still in Alaska and @NorCal tried to include me in a Cab Franc buy but the timing just did not work. Hopefully next year.

The pics uploaded as a mess which I'll try and fix. Edit-basically cannot fix. Sorry about the duplicates.
EA17C4BF-759F-439C-B976-A877F8DF1D35.jpeg352558E9-8FAB-4C18-B291-0202C5AC35DB.jpeg47277274-B429-4402-A082-A289E3D9D012.jpegC26D017D-6B70-46DE-97AC-DBCBD3D3FDC9.jpeg52BB5AFE-A553-459C-9F9A-5D9967326231.jpeg
 
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Kraffty

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sounds like you've been very busy, looking good. Where do you find those square crates? I've been using the rectangular milk crates but those look much better.
 

CDrew

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Where do you find those square crates? I've been using the rectangular milk crates but those look much better.
Funny you should ask. Our local elementary school changed dairy suppliers and the new supplier uses rectangular crates. But the school one evening put about 30 of the small square crates out by the dumpster. I was there walking the dog and saw the custodian doing that. We went straight home and came back with the minivan and liberated all 30!
 

CDrew

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Pics did not come thru... I'm interested to see how your harvest turned out.
Odd, they show up for me in the first post. But a very fast and brief season! 3 varietals/1000 pounds of grapes in 7 days. Racking the Syrah and Sangiovese off the gross lees this evening. Primitivo is fermenting away nicely! I tasted the just pressed Syrah yesterday and it is delicious. Should be really nice in a few years.

Still need to do a Rose though, so I forsee and additional harvest soon. Time has really flown by this week. Next week will be better when the wine is all safely tucked away in the dark to complete MLF for a few weeks. I'll edit this post with a test picA17E9C9D-DFF7-4F65-8353-3B102D0511EF.jpeg

This is about 46 gallons of new wine and 3 fermenters of Primitivo that I picked and started yesterday. My garage is a disaster, but should have tidy by tomorrow.
 

CDrew

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@CDrew curious why is it that I’ve never heard of Primitivo until reading your postings? Is there a reason it’s not a more popular varietal?
I don't know but I have a theory. It's pretty common here and most wineries have a Primitivo.

It's a clone of the same parent as Zinfandel, and looks smells tastes the same to me. I think that since there is huge acreage of Zinfandel all over California, this was a way to make basically the same grape stand out from the crowd. It is said that Primitivo is "more refined" than Zin but I personally think it's the same grape.

I've made a primitivo now 4 years running, and since one of my friends has a small Primitivo vineyard, I assume I'll do one every year. This year the grapes were spectacular and I expect really good wine in the end. I'm pretty sure I'll yield 25 gallons or more. I wish I had diverted some to a Rose, but I just ran out of time and so, here we are!
 

AaronSC

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I've been doing some reading on Primitivo, since I was also confused. The vineyard by my house has both, and had both available for purchase this year.This is the story as I understand it. Zinfandel and Primitivo were at one time essentially the same grape. When Zinfandel was imported into the US in the 19th century and planted wildly in California it began to evolve based on human selection, in many cases to have higher yields and in other cases to produce better "white zinfandel", and in others to survive the very dry California summer. Since Zinfandel was always a strange case and no one knew what it really was (though it was clearly vinifera) ampelographers had always been trying to find its analog in Europe. Ultimately, DNA testing showed that Primitovo was close enough to "call it a match", mystery solved. They are clearly not genetically identical (or there would be no difference) but apparently they are so close that they fall within the range of variation within cultivars. More recently the original source was found in Croatia, but it has a weird name I can't remember.

OK, why is it here? After identifying Primitivo as the same cultivar as Zin, it was reimported into the US and places started planting it. What they found was that Primitivo had some interesting flavor characteristics that people liked and some preferred over the local variation, probably because some of the evolutionary pressures on Zinfandels were not geared towards producing elegant, wine, but a lot of wine that could survive with no water for six months (and maybe to make a lot of rosé, too).

That the story I could piece together. When it came time to buy my grapes I chose Zinfandel over Primitivo because the winery associated with the vineyard makes the best Zin in California, IMHO.

Here's some grapes I got yesterday from them -Zinfandel porn!IMG_5443.jpeg
 

CDrew

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That Zin looks good. Crazy time right now. Nice connection for that. Fun that this year, everything is coming ripe in the same timeframe. Makes for some late nights and early mornings. I have to say, I prefer normal years with the harvest spread over a little more time.

I had a glass of brand new Sangiovese left over and am enjoying it right now. Sangiovese nouveau, Who knew? It's good. You can still see the yeast in it.0899132C-12C0-4972-B460-F4FDE8F4F4F6.jpeg
 

AaronSC

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Ha ha -I drank some Tempranillo nouveau and Barbera nouveau today while pressing my reds that finished fermentation. They're going to be good, I think!
 

jburtner

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I was planning to source a pallet of grapes/CD/FlexTank this year but plans changed of course... Might still do three buckets worth of frozen must to get a good 6g carboy in the pipeline. A good PN would be nice.

Cheers,
johann
 

buzi

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I love seeing the postings from you california guys. Someday I will make it out there. In the mean time I will live vicariously through your postings! Those grape bunches are beautiful!
 

CDrew

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An update--Looking ahead at my work schedule, I had to press the Primitivo yesterday. I was still at 4 brix. Early. That's a bit high but I went forward anyway. It's still very sweet tasting but very good and a nice balance. It's fermenting like crazy in the carboys. I like to do an initial press into carboys, which makes it easier to rack off the lees into more permanent aging containers in a few days. I'll wait until this primitivo finishes fermenting in a few days, and then rack. What a hectic 2020. 3 picks, 3 fermentations, 1/2 ton, lots of racking, but great looking wines. I still want another small pick to make a Rose.

CB7887E9-8980-46B3-BE60-49A67370424D.jpeg
 

CDrew

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There's a lot to update, but I'll start with the Syrah, sangiovese and Primitivo. They are all racked away in stainless steel, undergoing MLF, which is likely close to done. I'll check in a week or so. Strangely the Primitivo is still bubbling a bit even though pressed early. Brix are below -0- so not worried about it. Maybe the bubbles are a vigorous MLF. I'm planning a mass racking around November 1 when I'll oak and leave it until February. Will edit with pictures in a moment.EC823816-0530-4AB1-95B3-ED17FF82867C.jpeg57DAF3FE-4CF5-4579-8D79-90D36716CFBE.jpeg
 

CDrew

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I still want another small pick to make a Rose.

So this turned out to be a huge understatement of what actually went down today.

One of the wineries I've been a club member at for the last 10 years or so, had said last year I could pick the excess Barbera that did not get picked, I could not because of scheduling, but this year the owner called me. He said they had the 2 1/2 tons they wanted and there were still 3 rows left of "perfect" Barbera if I wanted to come up and pick it. Today was the day.

Today started with me going to the LHBS to rent a crusher stemmer. I was there at opening and had it in the garage by 1015 am. Then drove up to Amador for the Barbera pick. I was expecting a gleaning type pick where the easy grapes have already been picked out and you sort through the small clusters and raisins to get what you want. Instead, this was a pick of #1 first class Barbera. RIGHT NEXT TO THE CAR. I mean it was too easy. I should have bought more Brutes, because we filled 2 40 gallon Brutes in about 1 hour. Big mistake on my part, if we'd had more brutes we could easily have had more grapes. As it is, I think we picked 400+ pounds of grapes and there's about 40 gallons of must in the garage now. We crushed after an on the spot crusher repair.

Anyway this was a great opportunity and I have to thank Rob Morse of Morse wines for the chance at these grapes. He said that they had picked these this past weeks and got the 2.5 tons they wanted, but there was at least another ton left. There were 3 full rows, and we picked the first third of each row. What we took today only dented what's there. The rest will feed the birds and deer. And they are beautiful grapes. Nutty seeds, beautifully ripe, we ate piles of them while picking. Will come back with pictures.

Things I learned today:

-Own your own crusher. The rental one sucked, had to be totally cleaned out, the gears didn't mesh and had to be repaired in real time by me. I'll have one by next season. Not doing that again. Still had fun though. Will edit with pictures.EE12F0F0-6E2B-4934-9163-09EEA4CB0DDA.jpegDCCCEE34-A1FB-4D4F-9654-FA19731C2239.jpeg6056E882-2D3A-4033-8D4A-98E72F6D221C.jpeg3855809F-C60C-443A-ACAC-E4831C8FDBF5.jpeg2A7989B2-5B30-4524-880C-C15B8766EE12.jpegE56EAE1B-64DF-4947-AF2C-FDB2AA3BB2B4.jpeg
 

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