Nightingale's 2018 Harvest Report

The 2018 vintage harvest was completed on 22 February 2018 and was conducted over 4 weeks. The yield was for the most part consistent with our expectations. The quality is well above average thanks in the main to superb growing conditions. We had a fairly dry season with rain at the right moments, e.g. around bud burst. Our observations are in line with what other Hunter Valley growers are saying - All-in-all 2018 is shaping up to be a very good, possibly an exceptional vintage.

The quality of our Shiraz fruit merits special mention. It is not often that you get to take the fruit off at the precisely the right moment, down to the minute. This has seemed to happen this year. Our testing just prior to picking suggested that the fruit was just about there, we left it on for a few more days. Testing post picking on our Shiraz fruit, coupled with our visual assessment and own tasting confirms that the quality of the Shiraz fruit this season is very good indeed.
We harvest our fruit mechanically. This method, in our opinion, is superior to hand picking with mechanical harvesting beating hand picking in terms of yield, costs and mitigates the risk of contamination due to direct human involvement. This year we used an older style harvester and the state - of - the - art New Holland Braud. Here’s a link to the Braud range for those interested.