Spottswoode Cabernet vines began to shed their dormancy with a late March budbreak. The new growth was greeted by abundant April showers. Mother Nature blessed California with enough rain to inspire our public officers to announce the “official” end of the drought. A portion of this celebrated water came in late May and washed away some grapevine bloom, reducing our cluster counts and weights.
Initially, the season led us to anticipate a later than normal harvest, but then the weather entered a series of warming and cooling trends that continued through July. August was more typical and then the “sine-wave” weather pattern picked up again.
The Spottswoode Vineyard is usually one of the first to be harvested in St. Helena, but this season we were one of the last. The unusual and unfamiliar pattern of the 1993 season turned out to yield excellent, concentrated fruit of classic characters.
—Pam Starr, Winemaker