‘New beginnings are often disguised as painful endings’
We ended how we started, by singing on the land.
That vintage 2021 marked the beginning of yet another decade in this millennium was a truth I only appreciated in retrospect. That it was the last harvest for me at 12345 Oak Road (seriously, that was the address) was an abstraction, and I confess my throat aches with the words to describe the last grape I tasted from there, the last brushing of tall grass on my hand, the last view of Mount Hood from the top.
The season was already charged for all the reasons you already know, and climate distress laid down a gauntlet to challenge every decision I had made in my tenure there. There could be no greater reward for all the work we did on that land than what we were gifted in parting.
Our soils carried our most generous harvest ever to ripe perfection; as picking days booked in I tried to prepare myself for the feelings that would accompany the final bucket full. And then the day arrived, and I only felt the kind of intense gratitude you feel when you are wrapped in the embrace of your most trusted, your most unconditional love.
On the land, in the work, we are beauty; we are the perfection that surrounds us. The music is a byproduct of joy, it crushes out of you in giddy waves.
So, you will hear the usual words about the 2021 vintage: growing degree days, heat dome, early harvest, high quality, mmmmmmm…….and those words are fine. But they do not belong to this story. The wines made from those moments in our hands were imbued with the very special energy of beginnings that start with endings. Listen close, closer. Close your eyes. Come along. We’re just beginning.