January is usually a “slower” time in the wine industry. The wines from harvest are buttoned up in tank and barrel, and are closely watched by the winemakers until bottling. Now that the grapes have been harvested, the vines shut down, and “hibernate” during the winter months. This can be a very nerve-wrecking time for vineyard managers, as they constantly monitor the weather for frost, rain, and wind. The exposure of the vine to extreme weather (or lack there-of, in the case of rain) during the winter months can have a big impact on how the vine, and ultimately the grapes, will grow. Mother nature will determine the outcome, year after year.