Saturday, September 18, 2010

A Tale of Two Harvests

Last year I participated in my first harvest (which I wrote about here) and all I got was a warm beer and a taco at the end of a grueling day of manual labor. But oh what a difference a year makes!

As I said in my post last year, the most important thing I learned was to politely decline any subsequent invitations to Harvest. But then I got invited to the Gloria Ferrer Hands on Harvest event on September 13 & 14th, and all I can say is OMG! The Hands on Harvest exceeded my wildest expectations. I learned more about winemaking and the particular vines at the Carneros estate than I thought possible in two days. My palate was put through some rigorous paces as well with what seemed like a never ending parade of wine and food pairings.

I live tweeted the event with the hashtag #GFHoH, but later discovered many of my messages were saved to draft instead of going out…oh the joys of technology. There is much to share about what I experienced so I’ve decided to break it up in to two separate posts. For now, here is a quick pictorial of Hands on Harvest.

The Vertical Tasting of Royal Cuvee
Vintages from 1990 -1997, I was impressed by the consistency of color across all the vintages and particularly liked '90, '92 and '94.
"Champagne is like a bed, it's meant to be shared" ~ Bob Iantosca

Wake up and smell the vineyards

The “Gentleman’s” Harvest

Breakfast Al fresco
Left to Right: Tom Burnet, President; Elvia the Cake Lady; Bob Iantosca, VP Winemaking; Harvest Guest, Gerald Murphy of Revival Bar & Kitchen

Sustainability Walking Tour with Mike Crumly

Artifacts from the Miwok Midden

The Riparian Corridors

The Bluebird Boxes

Mid-morning replenishment-- Oysters & Bubbles

Grafting Demonstration

Geology Lesson in the Trenches

Pinot Pairing Lunch!

The Crush

The Caves

The People

I 'd like thank the entire staff of Gloria Ferrer Caves & Vineyards for an exceptional event, forever changing my idea of a harvest experience.

Stay post will go in-depth to the history & geology of the Circle Bar Ranch including the particulars of our Sustainability Walk led by Mike Crumly. If only Mike had taught my high school geology class I'm sure I would have attended more often and learned something along the way!

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