We stumbled into our 2015 harvest this week

A single cluster of Pinot Gris grapes mutating
A single cluster of Pinot Gris grapes mutating from our WW vineyard source. Interesting…
Locati Cellars crush pad is prepped and ready for fruit to arrive... but the forklift won't start. Hmmm...
Locati Cellars crush pad is prepped and ready for fruit to arrive… but the forklift won’t start. Hmmm…

The excitement of GOTR Walla Walla Stopover (8/13-14/2015) still reverberating throughout the valley we received two white grapes early this week, Tuesday to be precise. Insane to think that grape harvest is well underway in mid-August; we are far from the first to bring in fruit.  So, what do you do when the fruit arrives and the forklift you need to dump the grapes into the press doesn’t work? You leave that to the owner and you go into the vineyards to pull samples because you know there are a few more varietals needing to be scheduled for picking.

Securing a bin of grapes to a forklift.
We are up and running: commence with Crush 2015 at Locati Cellars!
The owner helping the repair completion to get us up and crushing.
The owner helping the repair completion to get us up and crushing.
Forklift repairman putting a forklift back together.
The forklift repairman thankful that he is wrapping up this call.

The next morning we still had no forklift, so we started to press our seven tons of fruit in the early afternoon. Not ideal, but we didn’t have a choice. It was still dark for another two hours after I fell into bed exhausted, but we did it!

Cleaning the press I was stung by a honey bee; they are very fond of grape juice!
Cleaning the press I was stung by a honey bee; they are very fond of grape juice!

I returned to clean the press within the same 24 hour period.  Bottling of the 2013 reds is scheduled to take place on Monday, so all of the preparation for bottling (i.e. racking and filtering) will round out our first week of 2015 Crush.  Oh, already two of the three grapes we anticipated coming in are scheduled right after bottling.  Stay tuned, this looks like it will be a crazy harvest year!

Cheers!

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