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Harvest is upon us and all we have to do now is wait for the grapes to mature. The still have a little ways to go before they are ready to be picked. We are looking forward to all the hard work these next couple months bring!
The time has come where Gary and Carol start the process of turning tons of beautiful grapes into the delicious wine you can take home in a couple years. Grapes arrive in the morning from vineyards in Calaveras County and Amador County to find our eager crew at Zucca's crush pad. The grapes are dumped on a table (as seen above) to allow us to hand sort and remove any bad bunches of grapes so only the best grapes will be used. From there, the grape must (juice, skins, seeds and some stems) ferment for a week at the winery before it is pressed and the juice is moved to barrels or stainless steel tanks. Okay, it's time to get back to work!
Gary punching down the Syrah must. Bins need to be punched down a few times a day for the week to mix the must and juice and spread the yeast.
Carol gets a little messy while pressing the Syrah. The bladder press seperates the juice from the skins and seeds.