My fascination for the natural environment started at an early age. As a boy I loved the family adventures in the African bush and wrangling cattle on our remote ranch in Colombia. That love and marvel of nature evolved into respect and a sense of responsibility. The vineyard was farmed organically but after 3 years of mildew attacks I had to modify my farming and I started farming sustainably. What does this mean? I basically use a light mineral oil, classified organic, for my anti-fungal treatments. In June and July I add a systemic fungicide to the oil. Systemic fungicides get absorbed by leaves and circulated throughout the plant to protect all the part of the plant that can’t be reached directly by the spray. Systemics usually also protect the vines longer which has the added benefit of not doing too many tractor passes which compacts the soils (bad for plants) and uses more fuel to drive the tractor. I don’t usually like synthetic chemicals but you have to make a balance between fruit quality and a philosophical point of view. In the end it is about getting pristine fruit to make the best possible wine. A lot of people use sulfur to protect their vines but I absolutely detest the smell of sulphur, so don’t use it.
I now harvest when I feel the fruit is ready and not because the grapes are dehydrating rapidly due to the microscopic holes fungi make on the grapes’ skin. I now harvest pristine fruit and that cleanliness allows the fruit to shine more brightly in the wine.