' Ken Brown - 2022 Harvest

2022 Harvest


September 2, 2022:  The 2022 Harvest was tracking to be a little later than usual, but Labor Day weekend has brought a significant heat bump, which is accelerating the pace. Our first Santa Rta. Hills fruit to ripen is the Rio Vista Vineyard Clone 667 Pinot Noir from Block 7. We harvested 3.3 tons. Berries have been very small this year, which is likely to result in smaller yields across the appellation this year.

September 5, 2022:  Back out to Rio Vista this morning where we picked an additional 3.0 tons of 667 Pinot Noir from Block 7. Brix readings are a bit lower than previous years, but acids held well and there is good phenolic maturity.

September 6, 2022:  The above average temperatures continue. Today we harvested 3.1 tons of Pinot Noir (Pommard clone) from Rio Vista's Block 8B. Beautiful color!

September 8, 2022:  A very busy and warm three-pick day, and indeed, the yields are proving to be quite small. We harvested only .7 tons of Clone 667 Pinot Noir from John Sebastiano Vineyard. Our block 4D at the venerable Sanford & Bendict Vineyard (Clone 943) netted only 1.3 tons. We also picked 1.3 tons of Pinot Noir (Clone 115) from Rancho La Viña Vineyard, Block 12.

September 9, 2022:  Another 3-pick Pinot Noir day with two of them at our star Radian Vineyard. We brought in 1.9 tons of Clone 115 Pinot from Block 40 and a scant .6 tons from Block 41 planted to clone 667. This may be the smallest lot ever from this block in Ken Brown history! We are excited to be working with Fiddlestix Vineyard this year; we harvested 1.5 tons of 667 Pinot Noir from Block 6D.

September 10, 2022: We spent the morning west of Radian at Vineyard Francesca, one of the coldest vineyards in Sta. Rita Hills. Again, yields were low—.6 tons of Clone 115 Pinot Noir from Block 1A and 1.5 tons of 667 Pinot from Block 3A. Warmer temperatures have begun to wane and we are looking for cooler, more seasonable weather in the week ahead. The heat bump was perfectly timed to get all our Pinot Noir nicely ripened even though it caused a furious pace in our cellar!

September 14, 2022:  Time for Chardonnay! We picked some beautiful clusters from the Donnachadh Vineyard, a new property for us, located just east of Sanford & Benedict Vineyard. A total of 3 tons were harvested from Blocks 9D (Wente Clone) and 9E (Dijon Clone 76). The grapes were gently whole-bunch pressed, settled, and dropped to barrel for fermentation.

September 15, 2022: Back out to Fiddlestix Vineyard for our last pick of Pinot Noir for the season. We brought in 2.4 tons of small, excellent clusters from Block 6D planted to Clone 4. All of our Pinot Noir lots were 100% de-stemmed and crushed into small fermentation bins. Periodic punch-downs of the cap make sure we get good color extraction and concentration in the wine.