Changes in perception about optimal maturity standards have resulted in extended ripening periods and later harvest dates for many Cabernet Sauvignon vineyards in the Napa Valley. Harvest decisions are now often based on qualitative perceptions of flavors and phenolic development in grape berries. Brix levels have become largely irrelevant for many winemakers with regards to deciding when to pick. There is general consensus that clusters lose weight with extended hang time beyond traditional harvest standards (23.5-24.5º Brix), but there is little data to indicate how much weight loss may occur. This trial is designed to study the effects of extended ripening (hang time) on yields of Cabernet Sauvignon in the Napa Valley. Data were collected during 2005 and 2006.
2006 Napa County Hang Time Study