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Alan Viader gives an overview of the exceptional harvest at VIADER in 2013.
In terms of start date, he reports that this year started earlier than last year by about 2 weeks.
The temperatures were warm leading up to harvest which accelerated maturity for some blocks. “About a week into harvest, temperatures dropped and we got a cool spell,” he says.
This gave him and his crew a chance to take a short break from picking. It also allowed him to spread out the harvest, making it a very calm and controlled year. The weather warmed up and stayed constant in the upper 80′s allowing for slow even ripening for the last part of harvest. Harvest took about five weeks from start to finish total.
The size of the Viader crew is 5-10 people depending on the size of block being picked.  Incredible work was done by the crew, two of which are full time with Viader; Anastacio and Gabino. Anastacio drives the tractor and manages the picking crew during harvest. Gabino is his older brother in charge of quality control such as removing leaves and helping with picking boxes. You can see them in some of the harvest pictures in the gallery below (photos thanks to Luisa Bonachea.)
In terms of yields, Alan reports that they were lower than initially expected mostly due to a slightly dryer and warmer season. He only saw some mild amounts of dehydration but overall it was a decent yield, somewhat smaller than 2012 but far better than all of the vintages spanning from  ’08-’11. This was great news for the winery.
During the harvest, some of the thoughts than ran through Alan’s head were about the high quality of the grapes this year.  “Every block is performing and showing so much potential,” he said. His Cabernet Sauvignon was especially gratifying this year, with remarkable intensity in color with more density and weight to some of the blocks, as well.
Overall, Alan says he is “really happy with how things are progressing so far this harvest.” To celebrate the last day of harvest, the Viader’s treated their crew and staff to a pizza and micro-brew party, and of course a few bottles of Champagne to memorialize the celebratory 2013 harvest. Take a look at our photos and enjoy (photos thanks to Luisa Bonachea.). And remember, come visit us soon!