Happy Turkey Day!
Wow, what a year! The harvest of 2012 will be one for the record books, for sure. Now that it’s finally over, I can take a deep breath and reflect on what just happened.
It was the kind of vintage that only happens one or two times each decade: unusually high quantities of grapes and unusually high quality of grapes. Think of 1991, 1997, 2001, or 2007 for previous vintages like this. We probably crushed 30% more grapes than usual and all the wine produced was of superb quality. If we had wanted to crush more, there were plenty of grapes left on the vine, but we just didn’t have any room left in the winery.
We started crushing just after Labor Day and were fermenting, crushing, or pressing pretty much every day afterwards until November. Our last wines just finished fermenting and we’re putting everything down to barrel right now.
Our Dry Riesling just finished fermenting, and as I taste it in a glass on my desk right now, it’s going to be one of the best we’ve ever made—which is excellent news because we’ve been sold out of it for months. Same with our Grenache from Dry Creek Valley. We’re going to bottle those wines up in February and get them out as quickly as we can.
As soon as we start blending, I’ll keep you all informed of our new wines—like the wine from the 150-year-old Bedrock Vineyard—as soon as we have them blended and safely in barrel. I can’t believe that harvest just ended and that Thanksgiving is already here.
We just finished our annual Paella Fest here at the winery last weekend—I think the best one we’ve ever hosted—and I can tell you that I’ll be thankful for a bit of rest this next week. Just put my feet up, pour some Grenache, and let other people cook for a change.
In the meantime, have a great holiday season!
If you’re looking for something new for your Thanksgiving meal, but love your traditional sides, try this zinfandel cranberry compote which features our Dry Creek Valley Zinfandel.
- 1 bottle (750ml) Dashe Cellars Dry Creek Valley Zinfandel
- 1 tablespoon grated orange zest
- 2 cups sugar
- ¾ cup orange juice
- ½ cup dried cherries or cranberries
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 1 vanilla bean
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- 2 packages (12 ounces each) cranberries
- Combine all ingredients except cranberries in a non-reactive 3-quart saucepan.
- Stir to dissolve sugar.
- Bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer until volume is reduced by half. Add cranberries.
- Continue to simmer until berries just start to change color and burst. Remove from heat.
- Stir gently with a whisk to break up berries.
- Remove cinnamon stick and vanilla bean.
- Let stand at room temperature until cool.
- Cover and refrigerate 24 hours allowing the flavors to blend.
- Makes 6 cups