2 of 12 varietals left to harvest

Stained hands from wine making.
Stained hands are a typical hazard of wine making; lovely color though, don’t you think?

really get into what I do, work or play.  When I come home from harvest work I am usually sticky with juice or wine from head to toe.  Observing the subtle and not so subtle changes as grapes turn to wine, how the actions we take determine the outcome and indulging my  curiosities and interests each year continues to intrigue me.  For instance, we choose a strain of yeast to add to a particular grape varietal to get the aromas and flavors we want and to be sure the yeast is hardy enough to ferment the sugars into ethanol once the balance becomes toxic to the yeast.  We feed the yeast well so it is good and strong before pitching it into the juice

It still fascinates me to watch the dry yeast come to life as we rehydrate it in very warm water then add juice to it to adjust the temperature to that of the must it will ferment.  When the temperature is within ten degrees, we pour it into the fermentation bin and hope for the best.  It takes surprisingly little time for the tiny yeast cells to reproduce into a large enough colony to fill the bin.  Watch each of the video clips and you can see this taking place.  Isn’t that amazing?

Sunny and warm until the breeze kicked up as we pressed the Minnick Syrah for Lagana Cellars.
Sunny and warm until the breeze kicked up as we pressed the Minnick Syrah for Lagana Cellars.

Locati Cellars has Mission Hills Vineyard Estate Barbera and Les Collines Vineyard Primitivo scheduled to pick and the Sangiovese we crushed last weekend is being pressed on Sunday.

Lagana Cellars has all fruit in and we are pressing the Patina Syrah, meaning it will all be racked to barrel before next week.

It seems we will be barreled, with secondary fermentations still going, before we have been in harvest two months.  It was a more manageable pace this year, but it is such a small part of the year.  Probably a good thing for my Fibromyalgia, but it is an exciting time.  Cheers!


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