The Walla Walla Harvest Report
Like many wine regions around the world, Walla Walla in Washington state had its earliest harvest on record in 2015. Even so, producers throughout the Valley are happy with wine quality and most especially with the region’s three most-planted varieties: Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Syrah. Early reports indicate that the vintage’s wines are already showing well overall.
While both 2014 and 2015 were hot years, 2015 avoided the excessive heat spikes of the earlier vintage and allowed vines to adjust to high temperatures and continue a more normal daily respiration cycle. Additionally, cooler temperatures towards the end of the growing season allowed both adequate ripening, and acidity preservation. As Anna Schafer (pictured), winemaker of aMaurice reports, ‘It was just a consistent heat throughout the summer and didn’t spike like it did in 2014. Also it consistently cooled off quite a bit in late August, which was a lifesaver for the vines as during the ripening they didn’t have to shut down and could continue respiration. Bottom line, I am surprised at how balanced the wines were and continue to be.’ While aMaurice farms in the Mill Creek District on the eastern side of Walla Walla, they also source fruit from throughout the region. Schafer has seen positive quality in all of their wines for 2015.
To keep reading, heading on over to JancisRobinson.com where the article continues accompanied by tasting notes for 61 Washington wines. Both of these articles appear behind a paywall.
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The links are below.
The Harvest Report: http://www.jancisrobinson.com/articles/walla-walla-2015-early-hot-but-good
The Tasting Notes with regional overview: http://www.jancisrobinson.com/articles/walla-walla-the-tasting-notes
You might also be interested in reading this free access photo (with captions) collection I posted from my intensive week in Walla Walla this summer: