Since its inception, Juve leads the dedicated vineyard team to precisely prune the Crown Point vines by hand, block by block, until all 50 acres are complete, beginning with lower-lying Sauvignon Blanc block and then through all of the red Bordeaux varieties above. "Everyone who started in 2012 is still working here today," shares Juve. There is a precise technique to pruning to ensure each shoot thrives as this will ultimately impact wine quality, style, and mitigate unnecessary leaf-pulling, fruit thinning, trimming, and hedging required throughout the growing season. "Unlike most fruiting crops, grapevines do not shed their crop; therefore, pruning regulates the amount of fruit the vine will carry as well as sunlight and airflow," shares Juve.
This year, Winemaker Simon Faury and Juve made a collective decision to postpone pruning to late February, as vines are living systems susceptible to fungal diseases during the rainier season. Additionally, a later pruning date can delay bud-break, which can prove timely as it relates to late March/April frost season and mitigate "shatter" potential. "Shatter" is when berries fall off the stem undermining appropriate yield.
Simon shares, "Perhaps the most important consideration for the vineyard team is maintaining a balanced vine. A majority of Crown Point Vineyard vines train to a unilateral cordon – essentially, one arm extends from each vine. From each cordon (vine arm), spurs are trained on a wire upwards. Depending on the vine's age, we assess the bud positioning along each cordon, determining how many spurs we prune back and maintain on each vine. Ultimately, these are the factors that determine overall vine balance to produce consistently world-class fruit across each vine, row, and block."
"Vine by vine, row by row, block by block, the devil is in the details for the Crown Point team," says the Proprietor, Roger K. Bower.