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Night-harvested, hand-picked grapes
Determining the Time of the Harvest
Determining the exact time of the harvest is extremely important. The month the precedes the predetermined time is devoted to the "follow-up on maturation". This includes the winemaker's daily visit to each plot, examining the vines and taking samples of the fruit to the lab for chemical analysis. In spite of the large scope of scientific tests, the final decision is based on knowledge, experience, as well as the winemaker's own sense of whether the fruit is ready to be harvested.
Selecting the Grapes
The secret of the Ella Valley Wineries lies in its ability to decide which grapes to grow and how to grow them, to determine the exact time for the harvest, and to select only the best and most suitable grapes from the entire crop. Approximately 600 tons of grapes are hand-picked each year, one-third of which is selected to meet the needs of the winery. This way, it manages to release precise and well-balanced wines and to guarantee their superior quality.
The grape harvest is carried out manually following an ancient tradition, in order to preserve the quality of the grapes. The Ella Valley Wineries are the only large winery that conducts this type of harvest, with the aim of preventing any harm being caused to this fragile fruit. The clusters of grapes are placed in small boxes, in order to ensure the wholeness of the grapes.
The harvest is entirely conducted during the cold hours of the night, in order to make sure that the fermentation process only starts once the grapes reach the winery, where they are under the supervision of the winemaker. The short distance from the vineyard means that the clusters are placed in the containers in the early hours of the morning, and that the fermentation process starts very soon after.