We will remember July as the most rainy month of the year. It seems that 370 mm of rain fell over the course of the month. There were continuous rains with pauses of at most 48 hours.
The soils are sopped with water and because of this, we couldn’t go into the vineyards with any type of machinery. Every week, we checked up on the health of the grapes and the leaves as we tried to gauge how much this humidity would continue to damage the harvest.
Walking through the old vineyard in Monfumo, we discovered some surprises: old grape varieties that we had never seen before.
We also concentrated on other work we do, no less important: the management of the woods and bushes around the vineyards, the true source of biodiversity.
I will remember this period for a long time. I don’t want to forget it! Faced with this situation and feeling defenseless has been a formidable stress-test for me. I imagine that it’s the same feeling you get when you see a thief robbing your house and you realize that you can’t do anything to stop the disaster.
Today, the vines are essentially healthy. Obviously, the younger leaves are laden with peronospora and some bunches were struck by hail over the last weeks. Basically, I can say confidently that there are three groups of vines:
– high hill: healthy, prosperous plants because the water never became stagnant and as result the vines could more easily handle this situation.
– mid-level hill: young vines and a few berries struck by peronospora. The berries struck by hail have dried and in a few days, they will fall to the ground.
– flats: this is where the problems are felt the most; the berries struck by hail have not been able to handle the rains and they have been struck by a light attack of botrytits. Fortunately, we will not vinify these grapes and we will focus solely on the hillside-grown Prosecco.
—Luca Ferraro grape grower, winemaker