June: Through the Grapevine
May is an incredibly busy month both in and out of the vineyard.
May is an incredibly busy month both in and out of the vineyard. The vines need a lot of active management but I also have to prepare the 2013 wine for release at the same time. It hasn’t been helped by my tractor-mower breaking twice within the space of two weeks! Despite this, I’ve been busy labelling and managed to arrange a successful launch of our new Pinot noir rosé at Grape & Grind on Gloucester Road. Now the wine is on sale, we’re starting to get feedback, all of which has been positive, which makes all the hard work feel worthwhile. To top it off we’ve just found out that we’ve won ‘best local wine’ at the Bristol Good Food Awards.
In the vineyard the swallows are back and the buttercups are coming out all around the neatly mowed rows of vines – a real sign for me that summer is here. I’ve decided the frost risk is more or less gone so have started tying two carefully selected stems down to the fruiting wire. As I move from plant to plant I also break off any unwanted buds. It can look a bit drastic but from experience I know it’ll mean I don’t end up with a tangled mess in a few months’ time.
By Ingrid Bates - Dunleavy Vineyards - Bristol