Yesterday, we racked the 2009 Malbec, the 2008 Merlot, and the 2008 Cab. We also continued washing bottles, and bottled the Chardonnay and the Grapefruit wine. It was a highly successful day, and (as far as I know) I once again completely forgot to take pictures. If anyone did take some pictures, please send them to me.
Next Saturday, we’ll be at it again. Here’s what we’re going to be doing:
1. Bottle 30 gallons of 2008 Merlot (it’s been in French Oak 18 months)
2. Bottle 30 gallons of Port
3. Bottle 15 gallons of 2008 Petit Sirah (18 months in American Oak)
4. Rack the rest of the Merlot and the Petit.
5. Wash empty barrels.
As with all Bad Astronauts events, there will probably be taste-testing and food involved at some point as well. I’m hoping there will also be more picture-taking.
Sam and I drew samples, tasted, and tested the pH on all 9 of the 2008 wines tonight. I’m happy to report that I’m very happy. The Chenin Blanc and Rose’ are stable, clear, tasty, and have good acidity. The Zin, Cab, Petit Sirah, and Barbera are all delicious and fault-free. The Merlot is an interesting case…we think it has smoke taint.
Remember all those fires during the summer? Well, things were particularly bad in Napa and Sonoma. Our Merlot came from northern Sonoma (Kenwood). The taste of this wine is spectacular for how young it is. The smell is sort of like a forest fire.
The question is: do we try to eliminate that smell, or is this a uniquely 2008 sort of a thing that people will come to love and will pay a premium for in 2010? We’re going to run this question (and the wine) by a couple people who have been in the business much longer and see what they think. Stay tuned!
Yesterday, Margaret and I poured Bad Astronauts wine at the Sonoma Home Winemakers Celebration. We met a lot of people, including a couple who were going to astronaut Rusty Schweickart‘s house for dinner and wanted a bottle of Bad Astronauts Galactic Grapefruit wine to bring him! We gave them one, of course! I hope they post something here about how he liked it and whether he’d be willing to be the good astronaut spokesperson for Bad Astronauts wine!
We also met a guy who’s dad worked for mission control in Houston and who described himself as a “Space Baby”. He very much enjoyed our wine.
This was our first public Bad Astronauts pouring, and it was a huge success. Everyone who tasted our wines loved them, the Galactic Grapefruit was a hit with the crowd, and we raised some money for Sonoma High School while having a lot of fun!