California Grape Harvest

On a recent visit to California we had the opportunity to video tape harvest. Kathy and I helped Basignani Winery in Maryland, harvest Marechal Foch grapes in 2007. The workers in California put us to shame. They were much faster than we were and selective in what they took from the vine. The smaller clusters of grapes near the larger clusters were left on the vines. They filled the lugs in a fraction of the time we filled one. Of course we probably spent more time talking than snipping.

Harvest is yet another example of the work that has to be done to create a bottle of wine. Some California vineyards harvest during the nighttime. They have bought or made their own light systems that can light up the section of grapes that are being harvested. The nighttime temperatures are cooler for the workers as well as the grapes.

I didn’t have any inclination to jump in and help. I would have slowed the workers down. The video is of a harvest at the Lanza Vineyards in Suisun Valley, California.


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