Thursday, October 27, 2011
What can I say about Domaine Serene for this 2011 vintage? WE ARE READY! The team, permanents and interns, had enough time to make their mark and tell the winemaker what they would like to perform for this promising vintage. The tanks and barrels are clean and ready, and I’m proud to say that I’m no longer in our big, but really practical, facility. It was really nice to have time to explore this wonderful part of Oregon and taste what the wineries of the Willamette Valley have to offer while we waited for the fruit and ff course, to enjoy our stay at “The Ritz”, our wonderful vineyard house. Ah, but now the fruit is here! Let’s get this vintage started Team Serene … and remember: Only the Best! – Alex, Harvest Intern
Tuesday, October 25, 2011
Monday, October 24, 2011
After 10 tons of Syrah about two weeks ago we had been waiting for grapes till Monday the 17th of October, which obviously means the winery is spotless and more than ready to receive fruit. Thanks to that delay, Erick Kramer, the winemaker, had much more time to talk with the interns, he explained how he wants to work, for him the different coopers of barrels have a real influence on the wine, and he showed us how to sample in the vineyard. Our point of view is very important for him.
We are about to start our third busy day today, the two previous days preceded very well: The grapes came in very healthy and full of flavor; the team works well together and the cook is very good. The meals are very tasty, croissants every morning. I am French, and this is the first time abroad, I can eat croissants every morning! - Mathieu Delarbre, Harvest Intern
My first experience of Domaine Serene is when I walked into The Ritz (the intern accommodation). This place is ….wow….the words ‘luxurious, opulent and generous’ spring to mind. I asked Rachel (as she had just picked me up from Portland and the airport – thanks Rach, you’re the best!) “is this really the INTERN accommodation?? This place is way too flash!!” As it turns out it is and I am very thankful for the extremely comfortable and relaxing accommodation, I know we will be very well looked after here.
It has been about five weeks since I started here at Domaine Serene. In this time we have spent a lot of time preparing the winery for when the grapes come in. Cleaning everything so it is completely spotless, preparing the new barrels ready for when we have to rack the finished Pinot Noir and sampling the grapes in the vineyards to get an accurate representation of what is happening to the grapes flavour and sugar wise has served nicely as a lead in to this harvest. We are all very excited, just like when we were kids waiting for Christmas! - Peter McGeehan, Harvest Intern
Monday, October 17, 2011
This year’s harvest is indeed right around the corner. We’re anticipating an exciting beginning to the 2011 vintage today! Domaine Serene’s first scheduled pick this year is clone 777 from our Jerusalem Hill Vineyard in the Eola-Amity Hills. The weeks preceding the commencement of harvest have been interesting to observe. At this point, the season has been somewhat comparable to 2010 in terms of grapevine phenology (e.g. budbreak, flowering, etc.). September was very generous in terms of sunlight and degree days. October has been cooler and slowed down development slightly. However, we have seen very good flavor and tannin development is skins and seeds. Our observations in the field have shown that flavor development has well surpassed sugar development – a positive and welcome attribute of this cool vintage. Right now, I am very optimistic about what 2011 has to offer and I believe the wines may be comparable to 2010 (wines with good flavor, balanced richness and structure). We’ll simply have to wait and see how things unfold. Let the games begin! - Erik Kramer, Winemaker