Having previously written on the history of the broader To Kalon Vineyard, I saw this as an opportunity to walk on the hallowed ground that had supported the production of exceedingly high-quality grapes for well over a century as well as to hear from one of the legends who had maintained and brightened the flame. Before I describe the tour, I would like to provide some background on the subject vineyard.
The figure below summarizes the history of the Beckstoffer To Kalon vineyard.
The Beckstoffer To Kalon Vineyard, illustrated graphically in the map below, is located on the western edge of the Oakville AVA. The table below the map shows the distribution of varieties and clones in the vineyard today. The current distribution was arrived at in a replanting program that was rolled out between 1994 and 1997.
Table 1: Distribution of Varieties and Clones in Beckstoffer to Kalon Vineyard
|Variety||Clone||Rootstock||Acres||Cab Sauv %||Cab Franc%|
According to information gleaned from Beckstoffer Vineyards, the soils are 60% Bale loam and 40% Bale clay loam. These soils provide quality drainage and adequate rooting depth as a result of loam in the first 24 inches and a gravelly loam in the subsequent 24 inches.
Vineyard management is the purview of the Beckstoffer team (the winemaker has responsibility for pick date and yields) and they have opted for the following management configuration:
Trellis System: Vertical shoot positioning
Row Orientation: Northwest by Southeast
Vine Spacing: 82% 6 x 7 (1037 vines/acre)
18% 8 x 7 (778 vines/acre)
Pruning: Spur-Pruned to a bi-lateral cordon system
The actual vineyard tour will be discussed in a subsequent post.
©Wine -- Mise en abyme