One could argue that it’s not the prettiest time of year in vineyards sweeping Sonoma County. The verdant leaves have turned color and fallen, grapes have long since departed the vine and an overall feeling of dormancy dominates the post-holiday landscape.
And yet, a kind of quiet beauty emanates from the gnarled vines. They’ve accomplished another growing season – the vines pictured above on the Ram’s Gate Estate produced their third leaf, yielding their first crop of grapes to be made into wine. It’s not quite time for pruning, the next event as vines anticipate bud break and fruit set. This is a time of recuperation, echoing what the rest of us are all feeling after the holiday craze.
Viticultural dormancy refers to the period of time when buds are cut off from the vine’s vascular system; in other words, the buds receive neither water nor nutrients until warmer temperatures and their biological clocks tell them to reconnect. They simply sleep, preparing for another frenzied year.
From all of us at Ram’s Gate, we hope you all had a wonderful, blissful, fun-filled holiday season. We aren’t sure what 2014 will bring, but we have a feeling it’ll include some fantastic wine moments along the way, and we can’t wait to share those together.