Bonsai Vineyard Harvest Update

Leon Millot Harvest - 9/26/07

I was on the fence about harvesting the Leon Millot. They were ripe or nearly ripe, but I wondered if they could benefit from a little more time. That was before I saw the weather forecast. It calls for a lot of rain, starting tomorrow, so I pulled in the Leon today.

9/21/07 : 3 oz (100 g)
9/26/07 : 2 lb 2 oz (975 g)

2007 Total: 2 lb 5 oz (1075 g)

That compares with 2 lb (just over 900 g) in 2006.

I started taking some Pinot Noir as well, but changed my mind after three clusters. They’re just not ripe yet, so I’ll leave the rest to face the rain. Those three clusters weighed in at 7 oz (210 g), and will be joining the Leon (and Price and Siegerrebe) in the freezer until I complete the harvest.

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3 thoughts on “Bonsai Vineyard Harvest Update

  1. EricsProjects


    I was able to harvest about 14oz of Frontenac. I wasn’t ready to use them. My wife suggested that I freeze them, which I did.

    I am interested to find out your process for thawing out the grapes and how you plan on using yours.

    I plan on making a 1 gallon mead with the grapes. Do you have any suggestions?


  2. Erroll Post author

    Hi Eric,

    I just planned to take my frozen grapes/tomatoes/rhubarb out of the freezer and let them thaw overnight in the basement. I haven’t decided how I’ll use my grapes yet. My total harvest for 2007 is a little over 5 lb, and that makes for a pretty small batch of wine (though I’ve made a batch with as little as 4 lb). Also, I’ve got ripeness issues – we had a cold rainy fall. So I’m considering making a white wine and using a malic consuming yeast like 71B. Now that you mention it, a mead might be a good idea too.

    Did you destem your grapes before you froze them? I ask because you might consider just preparing the honey-water mixture (must) for your mead and putting the frozen grapes right in. They’ll thaw out quickly and the freeze/thaw process might be all you need to “crush” them. If you didn’t destem, I would thaw them out separately, destem as soon as you can, then add them to the must, and pitch the yeast.

    At 14 oz per gallon, the contribution from the grapes will be subtle. That’s ok, you can make good mead with just water and honey, but I’ve always thought of 2 lb/gallon (240 g/L) as a minimum amount of fruit in a fruit mead. Consider adding any other fruit you have, it doesn’t have to be grapes, for more impact.

    Good luck, and let me know how it turns out!


  3. Ericsprojects

    I did destem the grapes before I froze them, so that should make it very easy. I’ll start the mead and then just add the grapes. I was looking through my photos to see if I had the one of my grape harvest, but I couldn’t find it. I think I took it right around when I was having camera problems. Anyway, they were quite dark, much like your grapes in this post.

    Thanks for your advice.

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