Harbinger of Autumn: Vine Harvest

With the end of summer and the beginning of autumn, a sadness fills us. The leaves start falling and take on all the colours of autumn. This time of the year, which represent a transition to new beginnings, also reminds us that all things must end. But in truth, the plants are just preparing for harsh winter conditions… That is why autumn is also called “fall”.  However, it is the opposite for the vine grower What work and effort he put into his vineyard the whole year, he gets around to reaping it in autumn. Every year at Lucien Arkas Vineyards, as in the rest of the world, vintage time is celebrated with great enthusiasm.

Vine harvest festivities date back to Greek mythology. Vine harvest celebrations honouring Dionysus, the god of wine of antiquity, were also meant to celebrate fertility, togetherness and enthusiasm. For this reason, vine harvest and the vintage festivals held in the lands of Dionysus in the Aegean Region are a unique event…

Organic Viticulture

The grapes at Lucien Arkas Vineyards ripen throughout the year before being harvested to great fanfare. For these celebrations, special dishes are prepared, and glasses are raised for a fruitful harvest year. It is known that Lucien Arkas Vineyards, a site of organic viticulture since 2006 on an area stretching for approximately 1200 decares where 21 different varieties of wine grapes are grown, has been home to viticulture and winemaking for 2000 years now. Organic viticulture activities are audited by Ecocert. Organic farming practices employed here reflect the dynamics of 2000 years ago. The land where the vineyards are located is windy (4-5 m/s in the north-south direction) throughout the year. This is an important factor affecting the quality of grapes. The temperature differences between day and night are about 10-15 degrees, a factor that determines the unique characteristics of the terroir. Lucien Arkas Vineyards in Torbali are currently in their ripening period, that is, in their prime age.

The grape producer and the winemaker live together in the vineyard. The better the grapes which they cultivate and nourish the whole year, the better the harvest. In other words, a good product is the fruit of good grapes, and good grapes are the product of good lands and experts. Therefore, with each autumn vintage, grows in us new hopes…

Harvest Time in Lucien Arkas Vineyards…

The samples are collected in the first light of the morning, when the grapes ripen. The collected samples are analysed in the laboratory of Lucien Arkas Vineyards. The time of harvest is decided by these analyses. Every harvest is as exciting as the first. Grapes have different ripening times. The harvest, which begins firstly with white grapes, continues with red grapes, but some white grapes ripen after the red ones. Each grape variety has its own unique flavour and ripening time. You get to know the development process once you get familiar with it, just like that of a child. The harvest in Lucien Arkas Vineyards begins in the moonlight, while the warmth of the sun surrenders to the coolness of the sweet moon. At night, in the sweetest hours of sleep, the whole team works for a delicious glass of wine. Some grapes are harvested using machinery, while others are harvested by hand. The harvester is one of the most important pieces of machinery. Because it not only allows a much faster harvest than hand picking, but also allows the grapes to be collected one by one and not in bunches.  When collecting the harvest, it leaves dried bunches on the branches performing a pre-screening. The grapes picked from their branches reach the production site in the vineyard in 10 minutes and are processed immediately upon arrival. Thus, the grapes are collected in the cool of the night when they are at their tastiest state, minimizing the negative effects of heat. The inside of the production facility is a riot of flavours during harvest time. White fruits and flower flavours resulting from the fermentation of white grapes, the flavours of spices and red fruit flavours resulting from the fermentation of red grapes smell like a sweet perfume. You know that it is the harvest season once you smell the fragrances from the production site. The production is carried out according to the criteria of organic winemaking in line with European standards, as in the vineyard, and features on the shelves in Europe as organic wine.

It signifies the beginning of a new harvest year when the grapes are ripened and are picked from their branches. After the end of the harvest, the leaves of the vines begin to dry and the leaves that leave their branches offer a magnificent festival of colours. With the cooling of the weather and the arrival of winter, the vines enter the dormant phase and come spring, spring bunches sprout and turn into grapes. In other words, the journey of wine begins in the vineyard and ends in the glasses…

Viticulture in Ancient Metropolis

The history of viticulture and winemaking in the region dates back 2000 years. The area where Lucien Arkas Vineyards is located is very close to Metropolis in the Ancient Ionia region. Metropolis is also referred to as “City of the Mother Goddess” in the records, as it is named after the Mother Goddess called Meter Gallesia. This clearly shows that Metropolis was a magnificent city in the Classical Age and later. The fact that the region is so culturally advanced has to do with its strong economy that is largely owing to the Menderes River and its fertile lands.

At that time, people who made the amphorae in which the wines were kept wrote their own names on these. The amphorae made in the region were found in many parts of the world. Fragments of sealed amphorae from the Nikandros Group, believed to have been made in or around Metropolis, are also indicative of the trade relations in or around Metropolis. Amphorae representing the group are located in Delos, Tenos and Athens, on the Black Sea coast, in the Levant; and in Alexandria, Crocodilopolis-Arsinoe, Akoris, Tebtunis and Buto in Egypt in the 2nd century BC apart from the Aegean and Mediterranean shores of Anatolia. It should not be forgotten that Strabo spoke highly of Metropolis wines.