Grapes are in, verdict is still out. Harvest 2010

It’s that time of year again. The harvest is almost over for most west coast  growers and many of the wines are being made from what was a challenging vintage.  Here in Willamette Valley, particularly Chehalem Mountain AVA, we can describe our thoughts on the results of this harvest first hand because we picked Pinot Noir this week.

The fruit was beautiful. Cluster size varied and brix were low despite the excellent flavor and balance from the samples of fruit we tasted. Tightly knit, focused concentrated wines will most likely be the phrases posed by wine writers and reviewers when referring to 2010 Willamette Valley Pinot Noir.

As always, in less than ideal harvest conditions there will be many winemakers who will say  “I’ve been waiting for this type harvest, low yields and concentrated fruit.” Harvest conditions are seldom remembered by anyone other than freaks like us who attempt to write about wine, vineyard managers and winemakers.  What goes on now on the wine production side is something we as consumers will contend with next year or the year after, so let’s focus on the here and now.

For now, enjoy the harvest slide show which took place at the Chehalem Mountains AVA just outside of Newberg, OR at the Nicholas Estates Vineyard. A big thanks goes out to Nick and Sheila from Anam Cara for inviting us to get down and dirty with the crew! Just in case you are wondering, picking is not a walk in the park!

..and to testify just how hard vineyard workers kick butt during harvest, check out the 4AM harvest of Jordan Merlot: Garden Creek Ranch, Alexander Valley. They also put our slide show to shame!


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This post was written by the Enobytes staff. Eat Well. Drink Well. Live Well!


  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by enobytes wine online, Matt Browne. Matt Browne said: Gr8 blog post, pics, & video!! #wine RT @enobytes Grapes are in, verdict is still out. Harvest 2010. […]

  2. Brent October 25, 2010 at 5:06 PM - Reply

    Thanks for the harvest report and pictures. Do you know if anyone decided to wait it out with the rains and all?

  3. […] {Full story} […]

  4. enobytes October 26, 2010 at 6:04 PM - Reply

    Good question Brent. Most Oregon vineyards picked before the weekend rains. There are, however, grapes still hanging for late harvest, e.g. Gewurztraminer

  5. Mark October 28, 2010 at 9:59 AM - Reply


    I can’t speak directly to this AVA, but I know a few growers who tried to give the grapes a couple of extra days at least and watched rot excessively.

    I haven’t heard of anyone trying to wait the whole thing out, although I am sure there are a few. That just seems really, really risky especially for smaller growers and wineries.

  6. enobytes October 31, 2010 at 3:49 PM - Reply

    Risky indeed! Wishing all of the growers a great year…can’t wait to see what this vintage brings.

  7. […] a fan of Anam Cara wines, I look forward to tasting their lineup every year. This is their first Reserve Chardonnay, created […]

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