Thank you for being a part of Yoakim Bridge Winery
So many of our customers, friends and family have expressed concern about the tremendous rains and their effect on our old vines that I will begin by saying that the torrents and flooding have temporarily stopped and there is no damage to the vines, since they are currently dormant.
Thankfully very cold nights and a few sunny days have enabled us to prune the vineyards on schedule. Late pruning encourages late budding. We have no frost protection from drip or overhead irrigation, or wind generators, and must rely on this pruning cycle exclusively.
However, once the vines start sending green shoots and the buds swell and burst and flower, heavy rains and wind in mid-March through the end of April can cause serious problems. If there is standing water in the vineyard for 10 days or more, there is the possibility of root and stem rot..we call it “wet feet”. Such vines can produce substandard fruit or none at all and must eventually be re-planted
Our soil is a sandy, clay, loam composite and drains incredibly well but sixty five inches of rain have fallen to date (25”would be normal), and we are expecting more next week. One March we received an amazing 35”!! Dry Creek Valley and all of Sonoma County is saturated. Thirty more inches, now through April would certainly compromise vineyard operations such as cultivation, row clearing, mildew control and initial suckering. All need to be completed by the end of April-early May for a healthy 2017 vintage.
Closer to home, Virginia and I are celebrating our winery’s 20th Anniversary. The Premiere Release was 750 cases of the Estate grown, old-vine, dry-farmed Zinfandel. We pruned the crop together, by ourselves, in February of 1997. It took the two of us a full month. We fermented in two stainless milk tanks (not refrigerated) and pressed by hand with a vintage basket press lent to us by our wonderful neighbors and winemakers, David and Pat Coffaro. In Dry Creek, at least, the 1997 vintage was declared the Vintage of the Decade. We have two or three cases of the fruits of this effort left for ourselves. The rest is history. Thank you for being a great part of it!
We are so blessed to live in a place that we love, work with the one we love, and make a product that we are proud of. It gives us great and continued joy to share it with you. We appreciate your support of our efforts. Thank you!
Virginia and David