Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Our 2008 Harvest Has Begun!

We kicked off our 2008 harvest today with 1.25 tons of Cinsault from Al Bechthold's 1889 vineyard near Lucas Road, between Davis and De Vries in Lodi. Flavors in these grapes from 119-year-old vines are very nice, even intense and exciting. And at 26.1 Brix with a pH of 3.59, everything about the grapes are in perfect balance.

Even my son, Alex, chugged down a glass of the juice without coming up for air. I don't know how he can drink that much sugar so quickly!

Being the first crush for the winery, we were ready for some possible hiccups. None of us had used the aging Demoisy crusher-stemmer for almost a year. We turned it on and the grapes just weren't dropping into the destemmer paddles properly.

We thought a drive chain for the rollers was loose, then, eventually, Steve Borra came on over to help diagnose the problem.

He pointed out that the rollers weren't moving in the correct direction and realized that some off-season electrical work had caused the polarity on the main power outlet to be reversed.

Once Steve live-rewired the outlet, we were crushing very quickly.

We are hoping this Cinsault will finally be a good fit for our Panthos blend this year.

Sure is exciting to be sticky all over again!

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