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This week saw the beginning of the 2018 harvest here in the Santa Ynez Valley. Normally the white grapes come in earlier than the later ripening red grapes, but some sparkling wine producers have also started to harvest some pinot noir black grapes for their low sugar and crisp acidity. Likewise some have begun to harvest black grapes for their rose wines. On the whole however, these coming weeks will be mostly white grape harvesting. This is the best time of year from now through to mid-October to visit us in the Santa Ynez Valley to get a glimpse how wine is made. Due to the coastal morning fog and the daytime high temperatures, most winemakers prefer to harvest their grapes either at night or very early in the morning. This cooler time of day helps to keep the fruit fresh and cold. After picking, the grapes are taken to the winery where they will be pressed to squeeze the juice out of the skins and then the fermentation process will begin for the clean crisp white wines like riesling, pinot blanc, sauvignon blanc and chardonnay.

Join Stagecoach Wine Tours and experience this exciting time of the year in the vineyards!