People always ask, "how do you know when to pick the grapes?"
Little grapes early june
Grapes end of June
Frontenac Gris beginning of August
Marquette beginning of August
At the point of veraison, we know we need to start monitoring the sugar and acid levels. Scientifically speaking, their Brix and pH levels. The pH measures the acidity level and Brix is a unit measurement of sugar. Isn't Brix a great word?
Brix Schram. Maybe for a boy? Strong name. Honey, what do you think?
Sorry. I tend to get on baby name tangents these days. It's a little problem of mine...
Anyway, we have a device that helps us with these measurements. We pick a grape and smush it into the little device and can read the level on there.
For those of you that might care, we try to pick them when the pH level for the white grapes is between 3.0-3.2 and the reds are 3.2-3.4. And the Brix when the whites are in the low twenties (21-23) and the reds in the mid twenties (25-26)...roughly, but can vary by grape. When the sugar level rises to the right level and acid level drops to the right level, we have optimal harvesting conditions.
We anticipate, based on their progress so far, that we will start harvesting later this month. We were expecting harvest to be September. But I guess we'll have to learn not to have any timeline expectations in future years. And after a long summer of hard work, I will not complain about an early harvest. I'm ready!