At Casa Wallace we listen
to nature and work
following its rhytms.
The characteristics of our wine are the result of many factors from the land, soil and the sun to the hand that picks the grapes, and our minimum intervention in the cellar. With this maximum respect for the natural process, we’ve attained the most balanced wine that only the hills of Casa Wallace can produce.
The Four Seasons of our Biodynamic Vineyard
Autumn means harvest. Excitement is in the air. Clippers counted, baskets prepared, destemmer waiting, and friends arrive. Harvest is the culmination of a year’s labor of love in the vineyard. Since late summer we’ve been tasting grapes and taking Brix levels, a measurement of sugar concentration that determines potential alcohol content. In addition to sugar levels, taste, and intuition, we also plan the harvest in alignment with the lunar cycles, ideally to take place on a fruit day for a more vibrant and flavorful vintage. After the harvest, the vine leaves will turn bright shades of gold, orange, and red. After the grape picking, the vines undergo tremendous root growth and absorb lots of nutrients to store for the winter. Nitrogen fixing cover crops are planted between alternating rows.
Once the leaves have fallen and photosynthesis ends we can begin our Winter work: pruning.
We use the Guyot single system where we trim off everything except for one spur and one cane. The cane buds develop into the grapes for the next harvest, and spur buds will grow into shoots for the following year. Pruning prepares the vines for the next growing season.
When the weather gets warmer, the sap begins to flow through the vines, and small buds make their appearance. The cover crops are growing, and the vineyard blooms with life. Throughout the Spring, daily growth is astounding.
It is often the summer months that determine the quality of the harvest. Sunny, hot summers produce full, juicy grapes that burst forth with flavor. Vintages during summers with rain have a lower sugar content.
We do not irrigate the vineyard; this strengthens the roots making them go deep in search of water and nutrients. The structure of our wine is more complex, its flavors and aromas, more intense.