When wine comes in for brix testing, very few of us are witness to that process. In fact, until this year I didn’t have a clue. I have to thank Charlie and Patti Youngclaus of Vista Creek Vineyard for giving me that opportunity.

[Just as an FYI, the Youngclauses also own Villa de Buena Vista, an amazing bed and breakfast, about which I’ll later blog. This is where we stayed in Paso Robles this past September. Now, I can’t imagine staying anywhere else in that historic community, as the Youngclauses offer a home-away-from-home experience that I’m still trying to articulate. Needless-to-say, it’s the best of the best.]

The day I took this picture, it was during the September “bad weather” days. A blue sky would enrich this image in a similar way that parallels the enriching experience of staying with Patty and Charlie.

Frankly, if you work in this business long enough, you get to see most things… But, here I am 14 years later and just getting to see how different each variety looks when being tested for sugar levels.

The image below demonstrates those differences. Left to right is the juice that’s being listed as a variety.

  • Cabernet Franc (Block One)
  • Syrah (Block Two)
  • Tempranillo (Block Three)
  • Syrah (Block Four)
  • Grenache Noir (Block Five)
  • Merlot (Block Six)
  • Mourvedre (Block Seven)
  • Cabernet Sauvignon (Block Eight)