If you are tapped into farming efforts across the Maritimes, you’ll know it was a cold and extraordinarily wet start to the growing season this spring. Our vineyards in both the Gaspereau Valley and across the dykes in Kingsport had a bit of a slow start, but were really starting to catch up by midsummer.. or so we thought!
September is the golden month in Nova Scotia when our most pleasant weather takes hold. Those warm, near summer-like days ease into crisp, cool nights where a thick sweater is a must. This year however, our September days were uncharacteristically cool, the “autumn snap” came weeks earlier than anticipated.
For our crop, that means we lacked the required heat units to bring the sugar levels up in the fruit, ie. the ripening process or veraison as it’s called in viticulture. To date we have brought in only a few varieties of grapes, when typically we would be closing in on the three quarter mark. Our window is tightening as the hard stop will be the freezing temperatures of November!
This is one of those years where we truly have to extend the growing season to its utmost limit in order to achieve full ripeness. While that adversity is real, it is also the reason our wines have their signature Nova Scotia stamp of brisk acidity. As with any vintage, we will work within the limitations we are given by nature and begin to make critical decisions about what wines will be possible. We cannot force the wines, instead we approach the fruit with fresh perspective each season and craft the best of what is possible with what climatic conditions bring.