this, my friends, is my oh-so-sleepy-yet-so-excited-i-could-almost-burst face [complete with bed head!]. it was taken in the 7oclock hour with the sun coming up over the mountains and working it’s way down to shine on the sea in the estuary. it was a perfect morning! a perfect morning to get started on makin some wine…
this all took place yesterday: i had my morning cup of coffee, got caffeinated, did a happy dance and hopped out of bed. it was the first day of harvest! i felt like i had been waiting for this day since October, when i first fell in love with the vineyard. i danced a little more as i pulled on those gum boots and boisterously greeted the other sleepy eyed workers. this was no time to be sleepy!

i’d like to believe my excitement is infectious and since there is no time to wait for a reply if that was turned into a question, how about i give you a quick run down on how things went. oh, but one thing to note is that photos are a little sparse for parts of the day because when you work with and in grape juice, you get sticky. like, really really sticky. by the end of the day i was dripping with grape juice and stickier than i thought possible. anyways, let’s get started.

first, the morning crew went to the vines to raise the nets that have been covering the grapes for a little over a month. the nets protect the fruit from the copious amounts of hungry birds that will literally eat an entire vineyard if given the opportunity.

after the nets were lifted, the larger picking crew got a run down on how to pick. basically we are clearing the vines of all their grapes and as we do that we need to check it to make sure the grapes are perfect. no disease. no unripe grapes. just yummy, plump purple grapes get snipped and tossed in the bins. yesterday we harvested Pinot Noir grapes for the incredibly tasty single release Rosé. this wine didn’t used to be one of my favorites, but it’s quickly working it’s way that direction. it’s a delicious pink wine that is best either for dessert or as a breakfast wine with strawberries or even french toast. mmmmm.


anyways, once we had picked enough grapes to make this gem of a wine, the grapes [that were filling ALL those yellow bins in the background of the above photo ] were put into the de-stemmer to be, well, de-stemmed.



this here is the fancy de-stemmer machine. it really is pretty slick! the grapes go in the top, there are paddles inside that cage looking thing that gently flick the grapes off the stems, the grapes come out the shoot on the right and the stems get shot out a shoot on the left. voila!


then what happens after the grapes come out the other side? well, for the rosé, they need to be pressed. and how do the grapes get pressed? well here, because the focus is on small batches that are made with love, they get pressed by foot. you won’t see the big guys doing this …



yep, that happened.

and now i have been dubbed the official grape smasher for the rest of harvest which is a title i will not let anyone take away. this job is WAY too fun!


after smashing then it’s clean up …



and then after clean up, it’s wine time.


clearly it was a rough day at the office. can’t wait to go back to it on Monday!!! happy [almost] weekend, everyone. hope your Thursday is as spectacular as mine was!