Monday, September 13, 2010

Oh Hommage to Zinfandel: Can You Help Pick On Friday?

Dear Mark,

Waiting for the Zinfandel acid to drop has been like listening to a continuous recording of Samuel Beckett’s play “Waiting for Grapedot.” As each day passes more of the fruit makes the metamorphosis from berry to raisin; another bird, imitating Luke Skywalker searching for an opening to the Death Star, discovers an entrance and flies into a biosphere of luscious grapes; another chipmunk, less elegant than the skywalker bird, simply gnaws his way through the net and chomps the clusters dry. When that author who wrote “The Sensuous Man” years ago described a certain exercise involving the peeling of the grape, he must have been dreaming of our titillating Zinfandel. (Gentle ladies, this being a family publication, please use your imagination).

Only you, our modern-day Johnny Appleseed who plants Zin vines everywhere in Hidden Meadows and San Diego County you trespass; only you, who makes the annual pilgrimage to San Francisco for the annual Zin festival to gain knowledge about this grape to share with the rest of us; only you understand the mystique of Zin. And so it is fitting we invite you to be Master of Ceremonies for our Annual Zin Harvest.

A correlation of forces has dictated that the harvest commence Friday at dawn, including:

*The brix have held steady (with our judicious application of water to control sugar and lower acid) at 24.5 – 25 brix. The pH has risen to 3.37 and the acid has dropped to .84

*The weather forecast calls for continued warm weather the rest of the week, giving the grapies three more days to increase sugars and lower acid

*If the Queen detects another grape transformed into a raisin, it’s more hell to pay.

Doesn’t it sound like it’s time to you?

Since we were out taking samples in the vineyard, we also pulled 50 berries of the Petit-Sirah to measure.Yes, PS, of which I suspect Merlot Mike himself to be a secret admirer. Her pH is up to 3.54, her acid, has dropped to .72 and the sugars, while hovering close to 22 will undoubtedly rise with cold soaking because one row of grapes is raisins, another is close to becoming so, which is balanced by the longest row, comprised of less ripe fruit, showing a strong kick near the finish line. The time is near. And, with Senior Pedro here that day, why not pull it also?

Some people like to jog in the morning before work. Why not join us for the harvest at the Blue-Merle’s TGIF’s dawn delight instead?