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  • Floods: Downpour floods Ivanhoe cellar door, delays harvest

    2019 - 05.17

    PART OF THE JOB: Ivanhoe Wines owner Stephen Drayton says the heavy rainfall during harvest was an inconvenience but will be dealt with accordingly.Last week’s rainfall may have been needed for some but came at an inopportune time for others – such as the local wine industry.
    南京夜网

    Last Tuesday morning (January 27), Ivanhoe Wines at Pokolbin received around 70mm of rain in the space of 45 minutes, right at the time of their summer harvest.

    The rain was so rapid that water ran down from Marrowbone Road into the cellar door.

    Owner-operator Stephen Drayton said the vineyards became inundated with water quite quickly.

    “It was running right through our vineyard, it looked quite spectacular at the time,” he said.

    Luckily the water left no damage inside, but it did put a spanner in the works for their grape picking.

    Not only does rain stop the grape harvesting machines from operating as they get bogged down in the mud, the rain also affects the quality of the grapes.

    During this time of year, the sunlight usually helps make the fruit nice and ripe.

    However rain drops the fruit’s sugar levels and water dilutes the fruit.

    Mr. Drayton said this makes the weather a very decisive factor in regards to picking.

    “The weather tells us when to pick rather than we tell ourselves,” he said.

    Mr. Drayton has owned and operated Ivanhoe Wines for the last 15 years with his wife Tracy.

    He said he experienced similar weather problems in 2008 and 2012, but had a good year of weather in 2013 and an exceptional year in 2014.

    Mr. Drayton said they had already picked the Traminer and Verdelho before the bad weather struck and were unable to pick from Australia Day to January 30 due to wet grounds.

    He said they managed to pick the remaining whites, Semillon and Chardonnay, on the weekend of January 31 before moving on to the reds.

    “We’re taking the opportunity while the sun shines,” he said.

    Although the rain has been an inconvenience, Mr. Drayton said it is uncontrollable and will have to be dealt with accordingly.

    “Obviously this is an important time of year for us; it’s what we work for all year,” he said.

    “You can’t control the weather; you’ve just got to work around what happens.”

    Floods: Downpour floods Ivanhoe cellar door, delays harvest RAPID: The torrent rushed down Ivanhoe Wines’ driveway last Tuesday morning. Photos by Tracy Drayton

    RAPID: The torrent rushed down Ivanhoe Wines’ driveway last Tuesday morning. Photos by Tracy Drayton

    RAPID: The torrent rushed down Ivanhoe Wines’ driveway last Tuesday morning. Photos by Tracy Drayton

    RAPID: The torrent rushed down Ivanhoe Wines’ driveway into the cellar door last Tuesday morning. Photos by Tracy Drayton

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