Here Come the Whites!

After grapes for sparkling wines, Sauvignon Blanc and other wine grapes, often referred to as aromatic whites, are typically the next Napa Valley grapes to be brought from the vineyard to the crush pad. These grapes tend to mature earlier than most other grapes. Their sought-after and refreshing citrus, tropical and other fruit flavors are articulated at an acid/sugar ratio that requires less heat and time on the vine.

Picking of Sauvignon Blanc grapes, along with a sprinkling of other aromatic white wine grapes such as Albariño, Aligoté, Semillion and Viognier, began as a trickle late last week and is now picking up momentum. Toby Halkovich, director of vineyard operations for Cakebread Cellars, received his first Sauvignon Blanc grapes on August 4. And on the evening of August 3? Toby and his family had their traditional “last supper” heralding the long and erratic hours of this crazy wild time called harvest.