It's harvest time, y'all! And the Tank Garage Winery cellar is buzzing with activity. We've been putting on some serious miles this year, traveling all over California from San Luis Obispo to Mendocino to the Sierra Foothills to pick the freshest grapes for our wines.
Our first taste of white wine grapes came from Solano County's sustainably-farmed McCormack Ranch Vineyard. We love the aromatic Gewerztraminer these vines produce, chock full of bright acidity and bursting with flavor. Will it be turned into our next pét-nat? You'll have to wait and see!
Our first red fruit of the season wa in the Sierra Foothills at Sierra de Montserrat Vineyard, where we picked the first grapes of the season a beautiful batch of Mourvèdre. This grape variety is our winemaker's personal favorite, and it's always a big part of our Rosé program. The fruit was stunning, and we were filled with anticipation for the wines to come.
Just two days later, we were back in the Sierra Foothills at Clos du Loc Vineyard, picking Grenache and Counoise. These grapes, perfectly suited for rosé wines, hinted at the diverse range of varieties we'll be making wines from this season. At this point, all of the rosé fruit has been harvested, and we're excited to see its transformation as it moves through the fermentation process.
Our next taste of white wine grapes came a week later from Solano County's McCormack Ranch Vineyard, where we sourced our Gewurztraminer earlier this season. This location sits on the banks of the Sacramento River Delta near the quaint town of Rio Vista. Sustainably farmed, these Albariño grapes are known for their high acidity and aromatic profile, promising a crisp and refreshing wine.
September was a quiet month in our cellar as we patiently waited for our next grapes to roll in. The 2023 vintage had a cooler start to the season, so many of our vineyards were 2-3 weeks behind last year's Harvest schedule. As October rolled in, we were thrilled to welcome Grüner Veltliner from Santa Maria Valley. Known for its versatility and unique flavor profile, the wait for these grapes was indeed long. But as the saying goes, good things come to those who wait.
Next on our journey was the Trousseau Gris from the legendary Fannuchi-Wood Road Vineyard in Russian River Valley. This rare Italian variety is the only planting of Trousseau Gris in the entire US! Known for their delicate and intricate flavors, we keep coming back to this vineyard year after year. We love Trousseau Gris for our Orange wines, and, naturally, decided to have a foot-stompin' dance party in the cellar to crush the fruit in style.
Our journey took us to Napa Valley for the first time this season, where we picked Syrah from Frediani Vineyard in Calistoga. We've been working with the 5th generation farmer, Jim Frediani, for as long as Tank has existed, and for good reason. Home to some of the oldest vines in California, this vineyard is known for its scorching hot days and cool nights, resulting in grapes we go gaga over. We foot-stomped these beautiful bunches to delicately crush the fruit without releasing the seed tannins, leading to an intensely smooth wine perfect for our bold red blends.
The harvest season picked up the pace with the arrival of Petite Sirah from Vine View Ranch in Mendocino. Known for its robust, spicy characteristics and a bold tannin structure, we love blending this variety with Zinfandel and Cabernet to produce wines you'll obsess over, like I Love You But I've Chosen Disco.
The next stop in our journey brought us to Los Alamos with the Reisling from Kick On Ranch. Known for their high acidity and aromatic intensity, these grapes highlight the breezy terroir of the SLO Coast.
We ain't done yet! Stay tuned next month to hear all about the last few weeks of Harvest – it's going to be an exciting time.