22 July 2011

Bubbles are in the Bottle

We finally got the sparkling wine bottled this week.  It was far less of a process than I had feared and it is fun to have it in the bottle doing its stuff.  The secondary fermentation should be done in 3 to 6 weeks then I have to figure out how to disgorge the wine to remove the yeast we added and then, finally, it will be ready for sale.  Well, there is the minor issue of a new label and getting it approved but we are working on that.  The process was only slightly more involved then an normal bottling.  It started the day before with me adding sugar to the wine so the yeast would have a food source in the bottle which will create the bubbles.  The bottling itself started with Mary.  She dumped out the glass and then sparged the bottles with nitrogen gas.  Kerrie, our intern, added a set amount of yeast, Rosairo put the bottles on the filler we borrowed from another winery and took them off again.  Next Barry and Guadalupe put a crown seal on the bottles and Sebastian packed them into picking bins so the bottles are laying down for fermentation.  I just stood around and directed and took pictures of course.  The day went very well and it took us about 6 hours to do 200 cases.
Out in the vineyard the sun is mostly shining and our grapes are growing.  It would be nice to get a little more heat but this weekend is supposed to be in the 80s and that will be great.  Here are our clusters: Foch, left and Chard, right.  You can see the little grapes just starting to form and if you look closely at the Foch cluster you can see where Sebastian trimmed off the shoulder, the little side cluster, to help with ripening.
On a side note I will be in southern Oregon next week, a little work and a little vacation so no update.  Mary has promised to take pictures of our clusters so we will not miss a week.  You all have a great week off and I'll write again soon.
Cool Weed
Riley wishing he could drive

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