The Consejo Regulador has declared the 2016 harvest open and picking has begun in the vineyards farthest from the sea where grapes are riper. Barbadillo was using harvesting machines yesterday in the Gibalbín and Santa Lucía vineyards to pick grapes for the pies de cuba. Some of these bunches were giving readings of 12ᴼ Beaumé, well above the 10.5ᴼ required by the Consejo. Harvesting will also begin imminently in the pagos Carrascal and Macharnudo. González Byass, Fundador and Estévez asked the Consejo yesterday for permission to pick and are starting today. An organic vineyard in El Puerto, Sumariva Beato, supplying grapes to Williams & Humbert also asked permission.
|Grapes arriving at the presshouse (foto:diariojerez)|
It is generally believed that the harvest will be fully underway in a week to ten days when the vineyards near the coast ripen and all 30 press houses authorised by the Consejo will be working – though one or two may have finished by then. Last year the first grapes were picked on 3rd August while this year they were picked two weeks later, and the harvest is expected to finish in the second week of September.