Napa Valley Night Harvest of Cabernet Grapes

Harvesting Cabernet Sauvignon from our Leaky Lake Vineyard began late night on September 8th. Located about a quarter mile up the road from Caspar Estate, the Leaky Lake Vineyard is where Cultivar grows our limited production, vineyard-designate Cabernet Sauvignon.

Leaky Lake Vineyard Stats:
Varietal: Cabernet Sauvignon
Clone(s): 191/337
Planted: 2007
Size: 3.5 acres
Rootstock: 101-14
Exposure: West and North
Elevation: 1000 feet
AVA: Napa Valley
Soil Type / Deposit: Clay Loam / Iron

Leaky Lake Vineyard on map

Gathering The Crew For Harvesting Cabernet Sauvignon

The 2022 harvest in Napa Valley was a busy one. Early September brought some rapid changes in temperature, which made the fruit reach its peak much sooner than expected. Within a five-day period, our crew had picked our all our Caspar Estate fruit, along with the Cabernet Sauvignon at Leaky Lake Vineyard!

With their grape hooks sharpened and their headlamps on, the crew was ready for harvesting Cabernet Sauvignon by the light of the moon.

Why Harvest At Night?

Harvesting at night is a time-honored practice in the Napa Valley. In fact, most wine regions around the world typically harvest during the late night or early-morning hours.

Picking at night helps ensure that all the grapes are at the same temperature. This means there’s a higher degree of control at the start of the fermentation process and less oxidation of the grapes. This results in better wine, lower energy costs, and greater efficiency.

In particularly hot climates—which can include the Napa Valley—picking at night also means cooler conditions for the farmworkers.

Leaky Lake: Cultivar’s Vineyard-Designate Cabernet Sauvignon

If you couldn’t tell already, we love the Leaky Lake Vineyard. Its unique hillside location, clay loam soil, and position above the fog line make it one of those uniquely Napa Valley properties.

The wine we produce from this vineyard has a signature power, elegance, and intensity, thanks in no small part to our winemaker, Julien Fayard. Julien loves to work with terroir-driven wines, and each subsequent vintage of Leaky Lake Cabernet Sauvignon is a true reflection of the growing season.

We typically make less than 75 cases each year of Cultivar’s Leaky Lake Cabernet Sauvignon. Most of that goes first to The Cultivar Wine Club, with limited quantities then made available in our online store.