The Dolcetto Harvest

My dad, Sergio, displaying a bunch of Dolcetto grapes

We have finished the Dolcetto harvest, and with this we have completed the harvest of the most problematic and delicate grape variety. I am pleased to have succeeded in bringing these grapes to a good level of maturation. In the last two weeks, the Dolcetto grapes became, according to their appearance, ready – with a few bunches even beginning to go past their prime. However, both the chemical analysis and our tasting told us that in spite of appearances, the grapes had not yet reached the apex of maturation. We had to choose to either harvest the grapes immediately, while less mature and healthy, or risk leaving them alone for a few more days to allow them to reach a higher level of sugar concentration. We choose the second option and it paid off: a light storm on Saturday followed by sun on Sunday and Monday facilitated the maturation in its sprint to the finish. The Dolcetto is a somewhat foolish grape. In general it tends to produce sparsely populated bunches of grapes that, at the slightest movement, fall to the ground. The skin is never thin and toned like that of the Nebbiolo, and the wine that it produces requires an enormous amount of attention in the cellar. Normally, due to the difficulties associated with its production, it is a Dolcetto wine that will indicate optimal conditions in a producer’s wine cellar and show that the company operates with great precision in all viticulture matters.

And now, let the fermentation begin!

And now, let the fermentation begin!