Barossa Vintage Reports
Barossa Vintage 2017 (as at 14 February 2017)
Barossa has experienced a wetter than average winter and spring. This, combined with below average temperatures in December and January, will result in a later harvest than we’ve seen in many years.
Harvest will be three to four weeks later than in recent years, which is ‘back to normal’. Growers will start picking Barossa’s ‘hero’ red variety, Shiraz, in early-mid March 2017 (whereas the first pick of Shiraz has been early-mid February for many of the past 12-13 years).
With the good soil moisture and cooler temperatures to date, the vines are looking very healthy - and a later harvest date means the grapes will ripen more slowly, enabling a gradual accumulation of sugars and flavours, which is exactly what Barossa winemakers are looking for to produce high quality Barossa wines.
Most Barossa Valley white varieties are just days away from harvest, with BV Shiraz and Cabernet Sauvignon just through veraison at this stage, so possibly 3-4 weeks from harvest. Eden Valley harvest will follow this.
Fortunately in Barossa, summer rains are usually followed by windy conditions, so the 30-40mm of rain the region experienced from 4-6 February dried off quickly, enabling the vines to remain generally disease-free and healthy. Additionally, the soils have been topped-up with some lovely moisture to keep the canopies going throughout the summer ripening season.
Last week’s hot weather of four days in a row of 37-plus degrees Celsius helped dry out any berries split due to the rain.
Barossa wine grape yields are looking about average to slightly above average depending on variety, where vineyards are located, and viticultural techniques employed by the grower.
For more information, contact Nicki Robins, BGWA Viticultural Development Officer, on 8563 0650 or firstname.lastname@example.org