Harvest season has wineries around Oregon bustling with activity
EUGENE, Ore. - A chill is in the air, the smoke is clearing, and fall is coming. With the change of the season comes the busy time for more than 500 wineries in Oregon, all bustling with activity for this year's harvest.
Pinot Gris and Pinot Noir are the Willamette Valley's claim to fame, and Brent Stone, the head winemaker at King Estate, says that this year's batch should be good.
"The cooler growing conditions have meant higher acidity on some of the grapes, but stylistically that's kind of what we shoot for here," said Stone. "Really crisp, fresh Pinot Gris and kind of acid driven Pinot Noir."
Inside the pressing machines is where the action happens, but some of the grapes get special treatment, just for fun.
This facility expects to process 4,500 tons of grapes, translated to 750,000 gallons of wine.
To make sure all of that happens, winemakers monitor all of the weather, the timing of grape picking, the presses and the wine blends.
Right now, the grape picking is on hold because rain dilutes the flavor.
But while they wait for the vines to dry, they're still plenty busy with the grapes already headed to the presses.
Once the rain breaks for a bit and the grapes dry up, they'll be able to pick some more and the harvest will continue for several weeks.