Mark Twain allegedly quipped "The coldest winter I ever saw was the summer I spent in San Francisco." Summer 2010, in San Francisco and Philo, proved his point. Each summer, after the vines have blossomed and set their crop, Navarro's crew inspects every vine, shoot by shoot, and if necessary reduces the number of clusters to an appropriate level to match the vine's vigor, no small task since there are about three million shoots in our vineyards. By mid véraison in late August, Navarro's vines were expressing their severe displeasure with the chilly weather and many displayed uneven cluster development. Some clusters were ripening normally with all the berries at the same stage of ripeness. Other clusters had some berries at a normal stage of ripeness mixed with berries that were still hard and green. We decided to remove all lagging clusters. Navarro's hardworking crew spent most of September removing the greener clusters from the vines and we anxiously watched the potential harvest diminish.
These two photos were both taken in March, only a few weeks apart. No wonder the vines were confused.
Navarro's oak ovals were crafted in Germany and add rich texture to Riesling's alluring aromatics.
Riesling is the last grape to ripen in our climate and about half of our blocks failed to ripen sufficiently to make the cut into Navarro's Riesling. The benefit of the big chill was that the grapes we did harvest were physiologically ripe at lower sugar levels, resulting in ripe flavors at modest alcohol levels: a dry finish with a surprising cascade of aromas of honeysuckle, wisteria and Cecile Brunner roses that enhance wild salmon, smoked trout or a baked goat cheese salad. Silver Medal Winner