Vineyards covered with snow give me a sense of completion. The 2016 vintage has come to an end. Winter is a true turning point when you turn your gaze from the last vintage towards the new one. Soon we will be pruning and the cycle will begin again.
The rhythm of agriculture is comforting. I think the pace has been built into our psyche over countless generations. There is always risk in agriculture, but there is little we can do about it. To farm is to accept what nature gives and then making the best of it.
Working in a vineyard where there is real winter feels different than farming in warmer places where winter is more an idea than a fact. In the Napa Valley you start thinking of how early bud break will be in January. In the Applegate Valley when you look at your snow covered vines bud break is not the first thing that comes to mind.
I think a bit of real winter is good for the vines. They are exactly sure where they are in nature’s cycle today. Certainty about your place in nature is a good feeling.