Romancing the Grape

A clean harvest of quality fruit has the potential to develop into a great wine

What do winemaking and lovemaking have in common? While I’m searching for a punch line, picture this: an exacting young woman. Inexperienced but with brilliant aspirations and all the makings for greatness. She wants to give her all but conditions need to be just right. Too hot and she exhausts herself too early. Too cold and she becomes sluggish. Treat her roughly and she may become bitter. Neglect her and she will desiccate. And every woman is different and will respond differently to her environment. So will every grape respond with a life of its own to the longing winemaker’s advances.












Like a Virgin

Grenache going into the small basket press

My car is buzzing with fruit flies. Why? Because I pressed my Grenache and Syrah, brought the cake home and tossed it in the driveway. Huh? Let me back up here. My luscious Grenache and my sensitive Syrah went through perfect fermentations. These “girls” are developing distinct personalities, btw. The Grenache is a fun, happy, slightly naughty girl …











Color Me Cumbia


My sleep patterns are irregular these last few days and I’ve been ignoring my housework. I’m eating on the run and neglecting my correspondence. I’ve got crud under my fingernails, my eyes are bleary, my muscles ache, my clothes are stained purple and I’m listening to altogether too much oompa loompa Cumbia. Am I having a nervous breakdown? NO! I’m a new winemaker who can’t stop hovering over her grapes! Woo hooo!

Ezekiel is a seasonal worker from Chiapas who helped pick my Grenache












School’s Out!

Our last class at the famed “escuelita” ended on an informal and anti-climactic note. I wandered off contemplating  everything I’d learned, clutching my notes in hand and ready to show the world of wine what I’m made of …. ! Just got word that my first grapes arrive on Friday. . Read more…