"You do something annual every year, don't you?"
George Noory, US Talk Show Host
Making wine is a journey which happens once a year; seasons change, we modify our approach in the vineyards, we fine tune an aspect of our winemaking, we choose a slightly different oak. And then we wait for the results - perhaps years in the future when a wine reaches full maturity. And then we do it all again.
Here you will find details of all the vintages Ten Minutes By Tractor has been involved in and tasting notes for all the wines made in those years (select any of the years in the above menu).
From time to time we will also add notes of back vintage tastings or verticals made by us or others which enable you to track the evolution of wines you may hold in your cellar.
A “typical” Mornington Peninsula vintage year – good winter rainfall, dry with warm temperatures through summer and early autumn, no frosts.
The chart below shows temperature and rainfall averages for the 14 years since Ten Minutes By Tractor's first official vintage in 2000 and therefore represents the "shape" of a typical vintage over this period, inasmuch as there is a "typical" vintage. And it is the shape which is of greatest interest - temperatures or rainfall which vary to any large degree from the typical; for each vintage year we look at the data for that year relative to the typical. (See here for more details on climate.)
Fourteen year averages for our Main Ridge Pinot Noir...
Budburst - 7 Sep
Flowering – 21 Nov
Veraison - 3 Feb
Harvest – 31 March
Budburst-harvest - 207 days
[Climate data is for Cerberus on Westernport Bay (source BOM); our own data does not have the history to be useful but analysis so far suggests Main Ridge temperatures are ~1.5° cooler for maximums and ~0.5° warmer for minimums.]
DORMANT INTERVAL [May-Aug]: The period between the end of harvest and the next budburst.
BUDBURST INTERVAL [Sep-Nov]: The period between budburst and flowering. Key factors leading up to budburst are adequate soil moisture and sunshine with temperatures above 10°C (growth occurs when mean daily temperature exceeds 10°C).
FLORAISON INTERVAL [Dec-Jan]: The period between flowering and veraison, including fruit set. During flowering and fruit set we are looking for stable, dry conditions.
VERAISON INTERVAL [Feb-Apr]: The period between veraison and harvest. Dry and warm, though cooling, temperatures.
HANG TIME: Hang time is one of those terms that means different things to different people; definitions are numerous - we have seen it defined as growing season, veraison-harvest, flowering-harvest, leaving grapes on the vine after they have ripened and so on. We are using it as synonymous with growing season, the number of days from budburst to harvest.
The horizontal arrows on the charts represent the average time between budburst and harvest in Main Ridge (208 days) and Burgundy (161 days).
The well known 100 day interval between flowering and harvest in Burgundy (actually 104 days) is 132 days in Main Ridge.
Both budburst to flowering and flowering to veraison are about 33% longer in Main Ridge than in Burgundy but, interestingly, the final ripening period of veraison to harvest is only 20% longer - 57 days in Main Ridge, 48 days in Burgundy.