We’ll enjoy summer for a little longer. Temperatures are still warm and will be for at least a few more weeks. But one can tell from the sun setting earlier and earlier that days are indeed getting shorter. Gastronomically speaking this is one of the most exciting moments of the year. It’s time for grape harvesting or – as Italians put it – for ‘Vendemmia’, the pinnacle in winemaking.
Traditionally, the ripening, picking and fermenting of the wine grapes has always been a period of feasts going back since the celebrations of the god Bacchus in Ancient Rome (derived from Dyonisius, in Ancient Greece). The ‘Vendemmia’ is one of the most labor intensive processes in agriculture: though machinery has massively industrialised the process the best wineries pick & work their grapes by hand selecting only the best bunches. The end result is the incredibly delicious nectar we all know, intended for well-being, food pairing and celebrations since time immemorial.
For winemakers it’s the moment when an entire year of hard work comes together. Time to take very important decisions on how to process their grapes depending on what the weather has treated them like throughout the seasons, what quantities have been yielded by the plants and what is the intended end result.
If 2017 wasn’t the best of vintages, 2018 has all the potential to be a fantastic one. We had lots of water in spring and a great hot summer, now we just have to be patient and wait before we taste the fruit of this year’s hard work.