Early harvest for Valley vineyards
The summer’s record hot weather and wildfire
smoke contributed to making it an interesting and
productive year and brought the grape harvest in
sooner for many Illinois Valley vineyards.
“We harvest early anyway, because we make
non-alcoholic grape juice,” said Draper Valley Vineyard
owner Al Curtice. “We want a little less sugar
in the grapes, and sugar levels increase the longer
the grapes sit on the vines, unless it gets too cold or
Over at the Villa Novia Vineyard in Selma,
which grows eighteen acres of grapes for Foris Vineyards,
trucks delivering the last of this season’s batch
made it to the winery an hour before last Friday’s
“The crop is beautiful,” said Villa Novia owner
Gayle Werden, who has been growing grapes for 30
years. “We hit the trifecta. The pH, acid and sugar
levels were in perfect balance and the grape formation
was fantastic. It’s the least stressful year we’ve
had in a while. The wine maker was very happy. It’ll be a great year for wines!”........
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