Warm weather a boon to farmers, vintners of Apple Hill
The Sacramento region’s recent spate of warm weather has not only been a boon to cyclists, runners and others who love the outdoors – but to the farms and wineries of Apple Hill as well.
“We’ve been busy, busy,” said Debbie Lane, who described herself as a “fixture” at Abel’s Apple Acres in Placerville. “The weather has agreed with us. Everyone wants to get out in the sunshine and get apple pies for picnics. A lot of people don’t want to come up here when it’s raining.”
...“We have mild autumn weather – people should enjoy it while they can,” Bingaman said. Scott Larsen, owner of Larsen Apple Barn in Camino, said the warm weather has prompted an early harvest this year.
Vintners say a lack of early rain this year also means that wineries will do well.
“This year would be a great year for wine in terms of quality and flavors,” said Charlie Jones, owner of Lava Cap Winery in Placerville. “It will be a great vintage. We had the heat spell in July and a long cooldown to normal temperatures. Everything ripens slow and evenly.”
He expects the winery’s cabernet for the year will be “spectacular.” Zinfandels should be very good as well, he said.
“The berries were very small, and you get a lot of concentration of flavors,” he said. “The wines are denser and have more complexity.”
Lava Cap Winery will be releasing some of its white wines – a sauvignon blanc – in January, and a rosé in midwinter.
The red wines won’t be ready for another year and a half.
Jones said this week would be a great time to visit Apple Hill