Grape harvest at Bingham Family Vineyards

Last Tuesday night we finished the last of the 2010 grape harvest, Cabernet Sauvignon. Let me tell you, I worked very hard that night. I rode back and forth in the pickup truck as My Honey hauled grapes from the field to the barn to be weighed and loaded on a truck.

I just find it so interesting how the different varieties of berries actually look different as well as taste different. These Cab Sauv berries are smaller and less juicy than most of our other varietals. But then they were left on the vine longer in order for the brix (sugar) to reach 25. The late harvest Viognier was harvested weeks ago at closer to 30 brix.

This is what it actually looked like outside that night in the dark — well it was — dark. Usually harvest goes on late in the evening or during the early morning hours when the grapes have cooled off. The other day we (remember, I love that term “we”) took the temperature of some Tempranillo grapes that we just harvested and the temperature of the grape was 48 degrees. That’s a nice cool grape so that fermentation doesn’t start in the grape until we or the winery want it to.

But the darkness does not make for the most interesting pictures since you can’t really see too much. That’s why the harvest pictures that I showed you a couple of weeks ago were taken on a day that was so cool that we harvested in morning. Another reason is that I don’t really like riding on top of and hanging off of a harvester in the dark taking pictures of the darkness.

So, for this night’s harvest you just get pictures of the grapes. But the grapes themselves are the main character in this story.

Grapes, grapes, grapes, and a dirty barn. That’s the story. It will be a while before we get to taste these grapes as wine, probably at least a year. But it will be worth the wait. And I guess worth all this work.



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