Scenes from Harvest 2012

I am going to try to get back into the habit of posting here!  It’s been a busy work time for me so I have not been very consistent with writing.

We are winding down our grape harvest for the season.  I picked the last of the fruit from the Ohana Vineyard last week.  Still, I am very busy in the winery and with vineyards for clients and will be at least until the end of the month.  I wanted to share some cool photos from harvest this year because I know that many of you don’t get to see what goes on behind the scenes.

Let’s do the scary one first.  This is easily one of the biggest rattlesnakes I have ever laid eyes on.  We were picking Tempranillo at Ohana when my husband thought he heard an irrigation leak.  He went to check it out and found Rocky the cat harassing this giant snake.  Sadly, we had to kill it.  We just can’t take the risk of having a venomous snake like this around our work crew, kids and pets.  We have had one worker and three of our dogs bitten by rattlesnakes over the years.  All survived!

Even though I have been growing grapes for over 10 years now, it is still exciting to see the changes in the vineyard each season.  This is what a perfectly ripe and expertly grown (if I do say so myself!) Syrah cluster looks like just before it is picked.  Notice the “pillowing” on some of the berries.  This is a characteristic that I look for in ripe Syrah fruit.

I’m always amazed at the skills that our equipment operators show in their abilities to operate the machines that we use to pick grapes.  To see them cruising through the vineyard starting at dusk is pretty exciting.  And many mornings when I get up to do my morning chores, they are still at it.  We are so grateful for these guys and the work that they do!

I hope you enjoy these photos.  I will try to include some winery shots soon.


4 responses

    • Hi Kaye! Yes, we use machines to pick fruit at night, and we use people to hand-pick fruit during the day. Machines run better when it is cold, and we like to get our fruit into the winery cold because then we can cold soak it longer (cold soak is the period of time when the juice has contact with the skins and seeds before the whole thing starts to ferment).

  1. Love the last two photos… sorry not a fan of snakes, especially poisonous ones. We usually only see those in the mountains around us and I like it that way with our animals. Its cool about the night picking, never thought of that. 🙂

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