Bloom!

Both vineyard blocks of Las Madres are in bloom! Grape vines are self-pollinating,  which is why you don't see blocks of beehives like in other agricultural areas (save the bees!) The flowering period usually last around 10 days. Though short, this time is critical, as grape flowers are very fragile and any unusual drop (frost) in temperature or large rain-storm can stunt or "shatter" the clusters, producing smaller yields. There is no second growth of good quality, so what you have now is what you have for the year. Our warm and dry year has meant an early bud-break and flowering, but the coolness of may has slowed down the season a bit. As John Painter, the vineyard owner told me today, by the history of Las Madres we're still about 10 days early, which is surprising considering the cool recent temperatures. The canopy growth of Las Madres and the region is still strong, so the vines are happy. Fruit set, the size and amount of clusters currently flowering ,looks great ,so I expect lots of happy clusters growing into the first green-thinning pass (more on that later).  June rains are not uncommon in the valley, so the next month will still be one to watch. So far, so good!  In the cellar, Camille and I are both focused on our summer tasks, taking care of wines and bottling at our day-jobs. We will continue to monitor and preserve the 2014 Las Madres Syrah currently aging in barrel. We hope that our followers are enjoying the long summer days, hopefully with a glass of Rosé in their hands!