The harvesting of grapes is certainly one of the most important moments of the annual wine production activity. A time of fun, entertainment and joy, but also a moment of making important decisions, especially when the sun transforms the chemical composition of the grape from one day to the next -if not from one hour to the next. Thus, innovation in harvesting is indispensible for the new wines of Greece so that they can have the position they deserve on the global wine scene.
Innovation in harvesting includes the proper use of the most advanced diffractometers, a plethora of analyses (conducted in the state-of-the-art laboratories of Greek wineries) and precise weather forecasts. These are weapons that allow the harvesting of not only technologically mature grapes but also mature in terms of phenols.
A practice of top winegrowers -occasionally for specific wines- promoted as innovation in harvesting in other countries are actually the rule in Greece. This is the manual harvest. Greek wine grapes are almost exclusively collected by hand in Greece, securing the best condition of bunches and selection at the vine. The speedy transportation of grapes to the winery is considered especially important, which is attested by the frequent presence of refrigerated vehicles in the Greek vineyards. Vintners are also increasingly opting for building wineries near the vineyards, which maximizes the benefits of speedy transportation of the raw material. The selection of grapes it is often conducted on double conveyor belts. Innovation in harvesting also means application of methods highlighting the attributes of the raw material, which exudes the aromas of the Greek terroir. Irrespective of the colour of the grape, its freezing prior to fermentation as a rule helps in this direction and is often applied. Thus, apparatuses with liquid nitrogen, freeze rooms and tanks constitute inextricable parts of almost every Greek winery.