|Hot Summer & Early Harvest|
It has been an eventful summer here at Adelaida Springs Ranch and Rangeland Wines. Some very hot weather following less than average annual rainfall has delivered harvest promptly. We will likely start picking in mid September, weeks ahead of the past couple of cool years. We expect ripe wines with concentrated flavors. Our new Syrah and Mourvedre vines are doing well and will have their first full-fledged crop.
Watch your email and this web page for more news about our Harvest Festival pourings (October 19-21) and our first ever Wine and Beef Club pick-up event at the ranch in November.
Our new sheep flock brought many challenges and far-flung roundups this summer. We have over 50 fat lambs in the mix now and our guardian dogs have kept predators off our livestock so far. We fenced an additional 50 acres--big job in the summer heat-- to give the f lock a dedicated and secure pasture around our lake. The sheep allowed us to use no herbicide in the vineyard last winter and helped do some summer leafing to give our grapes better exposure to the sun. We're very pleased about their contribution to soil health, solar conversion (sunlight into delicious protein) and biodiversity on the ranch.
We harvested most of our beef right here on the ranch this summer, using a pioneering (first in California) mobile slaughter service operated by J&R Meats in Paso Robles. That means that our cattle got to spend all of their life in their home pasture, on native feed, with mama and friends. This is the highest level of humane handling and sustainability. We quickly sold out of beef club shares but our herd is growing and we will have a lot more tasty beef in years to come.
Last week we bottled the remainder of the 2010 wines, including Cabernet, The Watershed blend and Petite Sirah. Our 2010 vintage totaled over 800 cases, so we have a little more wine to sell in the coming year. Our 2012 harvest promises to be the biggest yet for Rangeland Wines, since we plan on making over 2000 cases. That will give us enough to open a tasting room when that wine is released in 2014 or 2015. Our long climb from grower (beginning with the purchase of the ranch in 2000), to micro winery (2007 vintage), to boutique estate winery, is progressing nicely. So are the gray hairs of the proprietors!