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  • Writer's pictureAllison Sheardy

Harvest 2021 Begins

This week we got in our first juice and grapes of the season. The first bit of harvest is always exciting, cementing the reality of the year's labor and the expectations of future wine and sales.

I don't think I've mentioned, but as of this summer, I can now add 'member of the winemaking team' to my resume. I'm certainly not the winemaker, but at the winery, we've decided to take a collaborative approach to the winemaking. I'd describe my role as more of a creative one, coming up with ideas for future wines and how to execute them. I also help consult on how much wine we should make (i.e. how much do we think the tasting room will sell) and what styles our guests are looking for. So far, it has been very collaborative, bouncing ideas off of one another and sharing resources -- and I'm loving it. I never planned on being on the production side of the industry, but it has captured my attention in unexpected ways. The romanticism of having my hands in the fruit that will become wine, that people will share over dinner or with friends, is intoxicating.

I am also learning SO MUCH about winemaking. I have a lot of theoretical knowledge (thanks WSET!) but limited hands on experience. In previous positions, I've helped harvest, taste barrel lots, work on blending trials, and assist on the sorting table, but this is a new level of involvement and learning (and my not-so-inner wine geek is freaking out). It has been so fun to take all of this theoretical knowledge and see how it actually works.

I don't see myself moving into a fulltime permanent winemaking position (I don't have the background for that), but I'm enjoying this experience so far. In the meantime, I'm putting together a study plan for the MW entrance exam, maintaining the tasting room during our super busy fall season, taking Cabbie to learn how to dock dive, binging Outlander, and trying to hold it all together!

Me watching the hopper as our first grapes of the season arrive; hand harvested Itasca grapes.

Currently listening to: Shawn Mendes, There's Nothing Holding Me Back

Currently drinking: a beer

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