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Showing posts from October, 2013

"The olive tree is surely the richest gift of Heaven, I can scarcely expect bread." ~ Thomas Jefferson

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So here we are, two nights before olive harvest, wondering if we will sleep for the next two nights, until we know if we have the minimum weight of olives to be able to go to the mill.  That is the first major hurdle.  Once we know that, we will know how much of our next year will fall into place.  

Without going to the mill, there is no chance for EVOO certification, no chance for competitions, no chance to go forward with marketing, because we won't have anything to sell.  Everything hinges on how many olives are on those trees.  

In the next few years, there will be a time that this will not be a worry we have.  There are 120 new olive trees being planted next spring, so then, there will be new challenges, but until that happens, and until Friday night, we will be experiencing the angst all small farmers experience, worrying about cold temperatures on their crops, worrying about yield, working hard to sanitize hundreds of bottles in a day and a half, sanitizing the fustis, the ha…

“Wine is the most healthful and most hygienic of beverages.”~ Louis Pasteur

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The 2013 harvest is winding down.  The Cab and Petite Sirah are sitting on the gross lees for a bit, and then we're going to rack them into their barrels and begin MLF.

We're now in the midst of our assessment of what we could have done better.  Truly, we could not have asked for a better growing season.  The Growing Division of the Rancho knocked it out of the park with the grapes that were presented to the Wine Making Division.  Okay, okay, they weren't presented, they were picked -- by us -- an astounding one ton of grapes, in mind-numbing heat of over 100 degrees.  In a word, the grapes were amazing.  Yes, we would have preferred the deer not eat 15 of our Petite Sirah vines, thus compromising them enough that the grapes got sunburned; yes, we would have preferred it to be 72 on the days we picked; yes, we wish we were still 25, but we all know the saying, "If wishes were horses .  . ." 

What would we change?  We would change a problem that has plagued us f…