After a few of the most challenging vintage years we've seen in Washington, 2021 was a great vintage year for us, even with the record breaking heat.
The 2021 vintage has been particularly intense- with all our grapes picked and processed by the end of September, almost an entire month earlier than last year. Despite high, prolonged heat beginning early in the summer (the temp was hanging out at and above 100 degrees for almost a month), we had a great harvest with all the recent changes at the winery finally coming to fruition. Though wildfires and smoke were still important factors over the course of the growing season, smoke levels were minimal compared to last year. We are excited to be able to use a little more skin contact on a few of our pét-nats this vintage without fear of smoke impact.
Our entire 2021 vintage came from certified organic vineyards. We sourced from a few new vineyards: Red Boar, just outside of Walla Walla, and Foundry Vineyard’s very own estate vineyard, Stonemarker.
Now that the vineyard has been certified, we are able to source from our estate for a Pét Project wine. At Stonemarker we try to go above and beyond certified organic standards and this year we were actually aided by the dry season. Arid conditions created very little mildew pressure and because of this, we only sprayed 5 times this season which is about half as much as is usually needed. We also opted not to use sulfur and instead made organic neem oil our primary spray, supplemented by some homemade compost tea,infused with fermented horsetail and fermented nettle teas (herbs that grow wild at the creek and wetland area just at the base of the vineyard). Stay tuned to learn more about our vineyard management and future plans for Stonemarker.
As we have in the past few years, we are also adding new wines to our 2021 portfolio but we kept a few familiar favorites around. The Chenin Blanc from Arete Vineyard, Conley Syrah, and Pinot Gris from Pear Ridge (formerly Acadia Vineyard)- all crowd favorites from last year- will make reappearances. New to the lineup will be a Muscat Ottonel from Red Boar Vineyard. For this single varietal, we will do various degrees of skin contact on this grape to feel out it’s potential. It’s an exciting and lively grape that will make an amazing addition to the array of colors, textures and flavors that we offer. We are also ramping up production on piquettes, the ever popular wine-like beverages which means we will be “re-cycling” more of our byproducts from the winemaking process.