Strange weather patterns lead to 'best harvest yet' in ETX - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

Strange weather patterns lead to 'best harvest yet' in ETX

The harvest season is just one week away for wine vineyards in East Texas, and Kiepersol Estates vineyard says it will be their best season yet.

The changes in weather patterns, between rain and sunshine, have been nothing but ideal for growing their grapes.

"It's well on its way to be a great yield and a good production year for us," said Frans Dewet, the viticulturist at Kiepersol Estates. 

The unpredictable shift between rain and sunshine may be an inconvenience while going through your day,  but it's been great for the vines at Kiepersol.

"As far as the weather conditions go, it's been ideal weather and growing conditions for us. The grapes are doing really well. Canopy is really healthy and producing really good fruit; that will make great wine," said Dewet.

A perfect balance of not having too much rain has led to a bountiful harvest.

"We don't want all that moisture on the fruit because obviously that produces fungus. Nutrients in the rain play a big role in the vines' overall health because it's all natural nutrients," said Dewet.

"We want East Texas to take ownership and so many East Texans do. This is their winery. This is the time for East Texans to come out and see their winery and see harvest time," said Marnelle Durrett, a proprietor and winemaker at Kiepersol Estates.

And there are many opportunities for East Texans to participate in their hometown harvest.

You don't have to be a wine expert to enjoy yourself.

"We make wines that satisfy all palettes out here, from the newest wine drinker to the old pro," said Lisa James, a sommelier at Kiepersol Estates.

A tour is available to walk through the vines and get a behind the scenes look on how the wine is made.

"We bring them inside and look at the tanks as they are fermenting and it will be a great aroma in here. We then go down to the barrel room and see how barrel aging is done and then look at the laboratory and look at everything that we do from the scientific stand point," said Michael McClendon, enologist and winemaker at Kiepersol Estates.

This is all done in a day's visit.

To read more about this great harvest and opportunities available for you, click here.

Copyright 2013 KLTV. All rights reserved.

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