Shifting Gears
November 1st, 2013
Peggy Fiandaca

Harvest is completed and the fermented juice is in barrels or tanks being transformed into a delicious Lawrence Dunham wines. From August through October, life at the vineyard is crazy. Days are long and hard with non-stop work in the vineyard and winery. As the days get shorter, vineyard life slows down a bit.    Harvest Grapes

In November we complete the process of positioning the vineyard for dormancy. Grapes that were left on the vines or dropped on the vineyard floor are removed and the rows are cleaned. The soils are tested and nutrients are added. The irrigation system is inspected and readied for winter.

In the winery, barrels are organized, harvest equipment is thoroughly cleaned and stored away until next year, and Curt begins the process of getting new wines ready for bottling. Usually in November we begin to test a variety of wine blends as we think about new wine releases. The art of blending is the mastery of the winemaker. Did you know that much of the wine you drink is not 100% one varietal without other wines blended into it? The winemaker uses blending to impact the flavor, aroma, color, and body to the finished wine.

Wine Blending
  Curt picks and chooses from different barrels of the same varietal and/or blends in a different varietal to achieve or enhance desired characteristics.

We age most of our red wines over 20 months so this month we are beginning to test blends from our 2011 vintage.

Is blending artistry, chemistry, or magic? We are not certain. We just want to make wines that taste, smell, look, and feel good in your mouth every time, every sip.

As we get ready for winter at the winery in the Chiricahua Mountains, the house is warmed by the fireplace and a big pot of soup on the stove.

One of my favorite soup recipes – Roasted Butternut Squash – warms you down to your toes. And don’t forget that you can pair soup with wine. Consider the rich flavors of soup when you choose the wine. For this soup, we pair our crisp Sauvignon Blanc style 2012 Viognier. Here is a direct link to the soup recipe.

Visit the Lawrence Dunham Vineyards’ website for more original recipes. Bon Appetite!