Julio Sáenz, La Rioja Alta, S.A. winemaker says that “It is going to be a harvest for the patient.” With the first Tempranillo grape clusters already cut in the estate-owned Montecillo (Fuenmayor), El Chaparral and Los Cuartos (Cenicero) vineyards and about to start picking the Garnacha in La Pedriza (Tudelilla), our technical manager voices his opinion of a harvest that has started “on the dates which are traditional in Rioja.”
After a year with “unusual, difficult weather” with high temperatures and a significant summer drought, the perfect ripening of the grapes is taking place very slowly, “forcing us to go at a slow pace, selecting and picking plot by plot, waiting for that optimum balance of components.” Furthermore, the “favourable weather forecast for the next few weeks will help us along in this leisurely vintage” which is certain to produce grapes of great quality and in excellent condition.
The great work carried out so far (pruning, canopy thinning and particularly cluster thinning) has helped improve grape quality and control yields within the figures required by the house (<5000 kg/ha), in a year that looks to achieve a significant rise in production across the D.O.Ca. Rioja.
Torre de Oña (Rioja Alavesa) and Áster (Ribera del Duero)
Our winery in Páganos (Álava) is already set with its innovative winemaking facilities, to be inaugurated with this harvest, predictably from next week. In the winery in Anguix (Burgos), our technicians are closely monitoring the vineyards to determine how each plot evolves and determine the picking dates. In both cases, the expectations are of magnificent quality.
Lagar de Cervera (Rías Baixas)
The Cervera vineyard in O Rosal is to be picked this week, putting an end to the 2016 harvest in our Galician winery. A total absence of rainfall has allowed us to pick, sort and bring in our Albariño grapes at a steady pace. The first musts have already completed their alcoholic fermentation successfully.