2015 Harvest Update From Winemaker Dan Smith

DSC_7827Harvest is off to an early and busy start! With lower than average yields projected across California this season, the VSJ vineyard is no exception. Under drought conditions, our Pinot Gris (harvested August 12th) and Sauvignon Blanc (1 of 2 picks harvested August 13th) came in with small berries and small cluster sizes. The fruit, though small in yield, is balanced and extraordinarily flavorful and concentrated, which is perfect for premium winemaking. We’ll have the remaining Sauvignon Blanc in next week, then we’ll be extra prepared for the storm of red varieties to follow.

Dan Smith/Winemaker


Winemaker Dan Smith delivers the traditional “first day of harvest” toast.


The 2015 VSJ Production Team, (from left to right) Roy Butler(intern), Dan Smith(Winemaker), Lauren Hruska(Asst. Winemaker), and Cody Schroeder(intern)


Dan prepares the interns for the first bins of fruit.


The 2015 Harvest kicked off on August 12 with some beautiful clusters of Pinot Gris.


Cory, Lauren, and Roy sort fruit as it runs up the conveyor into the press.