Sunday, October 10, 2010

Harvesting Semillon - The Final Pick

This week we harvested the last of our grapes - Semillon! It's currently in barrel -- mostly neutral -- and starting to ferment with wild yeast (we love it when we hear that gurgling noise that means fermentation's underway). Our harvest video is below (it's a bit rough, but there's no using a tripod when you're trying to work AND film and change tractors constantly).

I have to admit this harvest was rough, but fun. Every year I try to learn a little more vineyard Spanish. I call it vineyard Spanish because they don't exactly teach you how to say things like botrytis and leaf stripping in school, so you have to learn it on-site. The guys really stepped up and helped me this year, and I enjoyed it. Granted, Joe ended up mistakenly calling someone a pig (a word I had never heard in Spanish for pig), but that's the downside of trying to communicate in another language. Sometimes you mess up. To this day I'm terrified of saying pregnant instead of embarrased and generally avoid talking about being embarrassed to avoid that whole catastrophe (wouldn't be the first time I've stuck my foot in my mouth in another language).

Back to the winery. We're currently doing punchdowns on the Pinot Noir in the cellar. Fermentation on that lot is peaking, meaning that we're doing punchdowns three times a day right now, but soon to go back down to two. I don't mind the punchdowns as the smell of fermenting wine is intoxicating, but I do admit that it's been a bit difficult to do in the middle of the afternoon when the tasting room's open. I've been bringing groups back to watch me do punchdowns just so I don't leave them alone for half an hour. This works well until their glasses are empty or I have to run outside and clean all of the tools. But, c'est la vie I guess. We strive to be family staffed only, and sometimes that means multitasking and giving our customers a unique experience. :)

Watch the Semillon harvest video on our You Tube site, here.

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