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Wine Country Vintners Race To Finish Grape Harvest Before More Rain

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Vineyard worker Jimmy Guzman lifts a bucket of zinfandel grapes before dumping them into a bin while harvesting grapes

A vineyard worker harvests zinfandel grapes. (Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

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SANTA ROSA (AP) — Sonoma Valley winemakers are racing to complete the grape harvest after a weekend storm drenched the vineyards, threatening to mold the grapes.

Four inches of rain fell on many parts of the valley, causing minor flooding and power outages.

Many grape growers rushed to finish their harvest last week, but officials estimate that as much as 15 percent of Sonoma county’s grapes are still on the vine.

The growers have little time left; another storm is expected to begin Thursday.

An unusually cool summer delayed the St. Francis Winery and Vineyards’ harvest until Sept. 27, the latest date in the winery’s history.

(© 2010 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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