A friend called and left the following message… ‘Congratulations on your Gold Medal at the Vintage festival for the Lolo’s blend Syrah…….’
A couple of days later, a package came in the mail, and sure enough, a Gold Medal was there, along with tasting notes of our 2006 Estate Syrah, Lolo’s Blend.
In August I had dropped of some bottles to be judged at the ‘2008 Valley of the Moon Vintage Festival, Amateur Wine Competition’. The wines were to be judged by professional wine makers. I wanted to see how our wines would be received.
One judge wrote ‘This wine is awesome, a great effort’, another said the aroma and bouquet was ‘Classic Syrah’. A third said the taste, texture and flavor were ‘Complex and Velvety’.
As any winemaker will tell you, ‘To make good wine, you need to start with good grapes’. The secret to our grapes – Worms, Vermicompost and Vermicompost teas.
Back in 2002, when we planted our vines, a cup of Vermicompost was added to each vine at planting. 400 vines were planted this way. As a control, we planted 32 vines with no Vermicompost. Of those 32 vines, 8 died, for a mortality rate of 25%. We lost 2 vines in the other 400; a mortality rate of .005%.
Vermicompost teas have been used as a drench, feeding the plants directly at the drip line. We have also used Vermicompost tea as a foliar spray to control powdery mildew and enhance our canopy.
It is my belief that these vineyard practices have led to our great tasting grapes. This fruit then goes on to make award winning wines.
Oh yes, the worms… They are at the core of it all. Processing our organic pre-composted dairy manure, and turning it into nature’s gold – Sonoma Valley Worm Farm Vermicompost. Give some to your vines or garden. They will love you for it!
You might even win an award or two…