The fiftieth anniversary harvest of Vernaccia di San Gimignano looks like being excellent
What is about to begin in San Gimignano is not just any old harvest: it is the harvest of the year in which we celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of the Vernaccia di San Gimignano DOC appellation, the first Italian wine to be assigned this qualification, in 1966.
So it is the harvest of the fifty-first vintage of Vernaccia di San Gimignano DOCG, and it seems to be worthy of the occasion. Thanks to the dry, breezy weather that characterised the months of July and August, the grapes are healthy and within the norm in terms of quantity. Given the seasonal progress, which will lead to a greater density in the must, we expect to have Vernacce with an excellent sugar content and, thanks to the rain that we had at the end of August, which favoured the final ripening phase, we can assume that production will be the same or slightly higher than that of last year.
The vegetative phase of the Vernaccia di San Gimignano vines began with budding in the first ten days of April, about ten days earlier than usual, following a winter characterised by mild temperatures and an absence of snow, which was sometimes very dry, and a very warm early spring. Immediately afterwards, however, the temperatures dropped considerably and a long rainy period began, slowing down the vegetative development and bringing things back to normal.
After a May characterised by frequent rain and temperatures below average, the vines began to blossom in the first ten days of June, as usual. This phase was excellent, as was the fruit setting that followed. Abundant, higher than average rainfall did not affect the quantity and quality of the bunches, and fed the underground water tables, which were precious in the month of August which, like July, recorded very little rainfall.
Considering the precipitation that characterised this first vegetative phase, the more common vine pests forced producers to treat the plants more frequently in May and June, while the hot sunny weather that characterised July and August almost constantly, brought the need for treatments back to normal.
Veraison began slowly in mid-July, ending in the first ten days of August: hot, but not excessive temperatures, dry sunny weather and a significant difference between daytime and night-time temperatures, preserved the acidity and guaranteed both grape health and a good aromatic concentration.
The Vernaccia di San Gimignano grape harvest will begin as usual, starting from the second week of September, and will continue until the end of the month when we will start harvesting Sangiovese and the other red grape varieties for San Gimignano DOC.