A good problem to have: Grape harvest is ahead of schedule

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Elizabeth Fields

MCCRACKEN COUNTY, Ky. — While most crops are withered and dried up under the extreme heat and drought conditions, there are a few people who are set up for a early and successful harvest.

Allen Dossey, the owner of Purple Toad Winery is one of those people. He told Local 6 he feels for the farmers but for his crops, this summer has actually made his job easier.

"Normally, we have to go through (the vines) and have to take every leaf off and that way the grapes get more air," he explained.

But he didn't have to this year because it was more important the grapes were in the shade.

"The grapes will actually sunburn."

He keeps a close eye on the three acres covered in hundreds of vines, so he knew the grapes were getting ripe a lot sooner than they normally do.

"We're about six weeks ahead, is what we're looking at so far, which is really rare," he said.

But he said it's a good problem to have.

The only slight complication he or other vineyards might run into is having enough space to store them. They normally have a few more weeks to prepare.

"What we're doing right now is we're making sure we have adequate tanks so when we fill something, we will leave it (the tank) empty," Dossey explained.

He and his family will actually empty a tank Friday night, before they hit the fields in the morning to start picking.

Unfortunately for the rest of us, the wine making process isn't a quick one, so it will be at least a year before anyone gets to enjoy this year's successful harvest.

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