Saturday, October 17, 2009

Landslide in the Douro

There was only one tank left in the cellar to press when the rain started, and with it came the hillside. Everyone was fine, just a little shaken. A messy, but memorable way to finish the harvest.

The front of the house after many hours of clean-up.

The backhoe from the inside.

The pool pre-landslide.

And after.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Friday, September 25, 2009

Douro Fruit

A view from the new terraces being built above the winery. Looking over the Douro River.

New terraces being built from the near-dust that makes up the earth.

When the fruit arrives it passes on this table for selection.

Vedemmia, Douro, Portugal

Foot-treading is still practiced in the Douro region. These open concrete tanks, referred to as 'lagars', are about 10x15 feet and 3 feet deep. Every morning people are treading in the tanks singing.

Trucks drive from the high terraces above the river and unload in this area.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

A look From the Inside

The view from top,

I know them all by name.

The Cellar Swallowed Me

As many experience during vintage, I have no life outside the cellar. Up and down I climb the 3-4 story catwalks that sprawl in all directions. Checking a pump here, adding yeast there, and stumbling over my own particular blend of Spanish and Portuguese. While I'll be posting more details, it may be documented a bit more in pictures this time around.

Thursday, August 27, 2009


I promise a vintage update soon, but until then here's a bit of the view.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Vendemmia Alentejo, Portugal 2009

My walk to work. Pretty nice. Amid 75+ hour weeks, Alentejo offers some excellent scenery.
Big sky, vineyards and olive groves forever.

Saturday, February 28, 2009

Carneros Fog

The Carneros region is famous for the fog that comes off the San Pablo Bay and hangs in the vineyards, giving the vines much-needed moisture. The wind machines are used to help circulate the air and prevent frost.

Barreling Down

After taking a break for the holidays, a rather dry Napa winter is in full swing. One by one the tanks have been emptied and sanitized with the wine now living in these excellent French oak barrels. Now the main focus in the cellar is topping the barrels and adding sulfur dioxide to keep the wine stable. Aging wine from past vintages is also pumped out of their barrels and mixed
in-tank to stir the sediment.