What is Veraison?
There is no mistaking it—veraison is a pretty obvious event that happens in the vineyard each summer…well, for red grapes at least! It’s the stage of development where grape berries transition from growth to ripening. Veraison also occurs in white grapes, but without the color changes–white grapes simply become more translucent. It’s at this point that the grapes begin to sweeten. The vine alters its focus from energy creation (through photosynthesis) to energy consumption where it concentrates its energy into making sweet grapes.
When Does Veraison Occur?
Veraison normally starts in late July or early August in the Norther Hemisphere. Our Merlot grapes started veraison the first week of August this year. Following the onset of veraison, the ripening process then takes anywhere from 30–70 days for the grapes to become fully ready to make wine!