Sonoma, Ca (August 6, 2020) – The Sonoma Valley Vintners & Growers Alliance (SVVGA), a non-profit trade association representing more than 100 wineries and 140 grape growers in Sonoma Valley, welcomed the first grape pick of the 2020 Harvest early this morning at Sasaki Vineyards in Sonoma Valley. Approximately 20 tons of Pinot Noir grapes were brought in for sparkling wine at Gloria Ferrer Caves & Vineyards. This marks the 196th winegrape harvest in the Sonoma Valley wine region. SVVGA recognizes the hard work and unprecedented dedication of Sonoma Valley vintners, growers and our skilled labor force in producing the highest quality winegrapes and premium wines.
Grape grower and owner Janet Sasaki quotes, “We have been doing this for 30 years and I have got the best guys, they are like family to us, and maintain these vineyards meticulously. This vineyard is more beautiful than ever and we are looking forward to a great crop. We only had one day that we had to protect for frost this year, we were fortunate.”
The growing season this year presented us with some challenges with a late frost event after budbreak and some cold rainy weather during bloom,” says Gloria Ferrer Director of Winemaking Steven Urberg, “however in spite of these potential difficulties we are today looking at a beautiful crop that promises to be excellent quality.” Urberg went on to say that this year looks a little lighter than average, and that in combination with an early bud break and some warm weather, the beginning of our harvest is 10 days earlier than last year and about 12 days earlier than [Gloria Ferrer’s] average. “While this year has thrown plenty of challenges at our team, we are all looking forward to a safe and successful harvest and to produce some excellent wines from the 2020 vintage.”
To commemorate the beginning of the Sonoma Valley Harvest, the community shares videos and photos ‘ringing in’ the new harvest with bells, a tradition established in 2018 by the organization. Growers, vintners, the local wine community, Sonoma Valley Fire and Police departments, local elected officials, industry partners and Sonoma Valley residents share their ‘ringing in the 2020 harvest’ to commemorate the region’s most celebrated season.
Under different circumstances the SVVGA would have hosted their third Annual Harvest Kickoff Party in July this year. In 2019 more than 300 vintners and growers gathered at The Donum Estate in Los Carneros to share in this celebration, and toast of the region’s most anticipated time of year. Since March of this year, the SVVGA has been dedicated to supporting the Sonoma Valley wine industry and greater community navigate challenges during the COVID-19 pandemic. With an aim to assist vintners and growers during this challenging time, the non-profit devoted energies and efforts to bringing critical resources, expertise and supplies to best support the wine business community and its workforce; compiled real-time updates to keep members informed of County Orders and state legislation; and launched multiple marketing initiatives such as Sonoma Valley at Home, The Sonoma Valley Wine Collective and Sonoma Valley Safe that reinforce safety procedures the wine industry is making, as well as improve consumer engagement during these challenging times.
SVVGA Board President and COO of Price Family Vineyards & Estates, Prema Behan, quotes, “Our heritage includes leadership in California winemaking, exceptional growing conditions and iconic vineyard sites. It’s our commitment to winegrowing and the winemaking of world-class wines that is especially evident in days like today. Cheers to a great 2020 Harvest!”
SVVGA encourages community members and the public to follow along this harvest season on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/SonomaValleyWine) and Instagram (www.instagram.com/SonomaValleyWine) to share in the #SonomaValleyHarvest.
The Sonoma Valley Vintners & Growers Alliance (SVVGA) is a non-profit organization serving over 500 members who share a mission to promote awareness of Sonoma Valley’s grapes, wine and history as the birthplace of the California wine industry. Sonoma Valley comprises six of the eighteen American Viticulture Areas (AVAs) of Sonoma County: Bennett Valley, Los Carneros, Moon Mountain District, Sonoma Coast, Sonoma Mountain and Sonoma Valley. To learn more about the SVVGA visit www.SonomaValleyWine.com or call 707-935-0803.