What’s it Mean?

Little to no rain. Early bud break? Probably. Danger of frost damage? Definitely. So what do we do? Just hold on, see what happens, a lot of winemakers and vineyard managers told me. 2009, a harvest of extremes. ’10 was rough, and ’11 entailed even more bitten nails. So, ’12? All we can do is wait, hope for rain. Right now, where I am, Alexander Valley, lots of sun, wind. Not a drop of moisture. Another pinch of information from winemaking and vineyard crews is that even the driest of dry farmers may have to break shape, pump H2O into their soils. Wine’s equation, we find, isn’t much of an equation at all, with each vintage handing us a new set of voracious variables.

So, we wait. Wait. Wait …