Harvest time has finally arrived at Oswald Vineyard! We have started our Roussanne and Albarino harvest 2021. It is so nice to be harvesting those two white grapes!
The first harvest of the year is always exciting! As you can see there is a lot going on at the barn. The barn is our central hub for harvests. It's where the coffee and snacks are!
We normally switch out drivers and co-pilots during the day because it can get tiring spending hours on the machine.
While harvesting, the co-pilot checks the fruit (making sure it's picking the vines clean and not getting to many leaves and sticks in with the fruit). The co-pilot also gets to keep the driver company (and also get snacks and coffee!).
The dump buggy is a super big help. We used to use trailers (see here) to hold the bins and let the harvester dump straight into them. A few years ago we switched away from trailers to the dump buggy. It saves so much time!
The dump buggy normally sticks by the barn unless it has to pick up more grapes. When the driver isn't in the tractor, he is usually helping at the barn.
Now it is time to fill those bins with fruit! John likes to direct the dump buggy driver to fill the bins. So, we normally let him keep that job for the duration of harvest.
For the Roussanne and Albarino harvest 2021, we only stacked the bins two high (as you can see in the picture below), not three as we have done before for some of the red varieties. You can see the bins stacked three high in the Montepulciano and Aglianico Harvest 2019.
It is sad to not have any more Roussanne or Albarino grapes to eat but it is so nice to not worry about those grapes. We found some Botrytis in the Roussanne so we harvested as fast as we could. Praise the Lord we didn't lose the Roussanne!
Now the last step in the harvest process: loading the truck! We use a refrigerated semi-truck to carry the fruit to the wineries, that way the grapes stay cool.
The fork truck driver is continually changing out. It is a fun job so it is not hard to find takers!
We double stacked the bins in the semi-truck so two people move them around in the truck. The double stacked bins are very heavy so whoever is in the truck gets a workout while working!
There goes a full semi-truck of grapes to the winery to be made into great wine! After a busy week, we are finished with the Roussanne and Albarino harvest 2021! It is so nice to be done with the white grapes.
Now we will wait for those red grapes to ripen so we can harvest them too! We don't have long to wait, just a few weeks!
While waiting for those grapes to ripen, be sure to check out the links below!