After a few recent winters with remarkably cold events, we managed to emerge from the 2020/21 winter without much cold damage to our vineyards. Bud break fell on the early end of the long-term average, fueled by warm spring temperatures and marginal rainfall, conditions that would persist until summer. The 2021 heat dome (we measured a temperature high of 48.5C on site) coincided with flowering in the vineyard. The extreme heat at such a sensitive time in the grapes’ development resulted in smaller than average berries and clusters and lower yields.
Warm temperatures and low rainfall persisted through early summer. Smoky August skies slowed berry ripening and pushed harvest back from what would have been a record early start on our site. Harvest kicked off in early September with our first grapes for our sparkling wines. The weather stayed warm with little precipitation for the rest of the month, allowing us to pick our fruit at peak ripeness and flavour and wrap up harvest on October 5th, two weeks earlier than we commonly do and making for a short but busy end to the growing season! Although a lower crop yield from the season was disappointing, fruit quality was excellent and the smaller bunches led to beautifully concentrated wines.