Third Vintage in Qvevri

In early October we had an offer to harvest Vidal grapes at Harvest Ridge Winery in Marydel, Delaware. Vidal was one of the white grape varieties that I had wanted to try in our qvevri. Previous vintages includes Muscat from Lodi and Rkatsiteli from Central Virginia. We did not harvest those grapes. Jason Hopwood, vineyard […]

The Power of Digital Marketing

Ron Cates talks about the power of digital marketing.

Ron Cates from Constant Contact delivered the general session presentation of the second day of Craft Beverages Unlimited. Have the wine, beer and spirits utilized the power of digital marketing? The focus of Ron’s talk was on email and social media. Ron started with email, […]

Craft Beverages Unlimited to Include Distilling

For decades Wineries Unlimited has been the premiere wine trade show in the Eastern United States. Several years ago the trade show moved from South Eastern, Pennsylvania to its new home in Richmond, Virginia. We attended the first show in Richmond in 2011 and attended again in 2012. Since that 2012 show, Wineries Unlimited has […]

The Burial of our Qvevri, the Birth of a Marani

I have been digging a hole for awhile. I had to place the qvevri in it several times to judge how much deeper to dig. Finally it was time to bury the qvevri. I placed the qvevri in the hole and tried to make it level. I slowly added soil, mostly clay-based around the bottom. […]

Covered in Ice

Vineyards are magical during the winter. Although many people love to see bunches of grapes hanging from the vines, in the Northern Hemisphere winter affords other romantic views of vineyards. We were hit with ice and for a few hours the vineyards turned into a beautiful diamond scene. This doesn’t happen every year. I braved […]

A White Cabernet Sauvignon

It smells like wine. We must have done something correct. A couple small carboys, in the refrigerator for a few months, were filled with a white Cabernet Sauvignon. Meanwhile a couple larger carboys with another white Cabernet Sauvignon needed racking. So it was time to move things around. Starting with the refrigerated carboys of wine, […]

White Cabernet Sauvignon Placed in Refrigerator

Our first white Cabernet Sauvignon needed to be racked. With only 1 1/2 gallons, by the time I finished racking I had 1 1/4 gallons and a little to taste. The aroma and taste reminded me of red berries. This is a different tasting profile for the Cabernet Sauvignons that ferments on the skins and […]

Pressing and Racking to Barrel

After a couple weeks of post fermentation maceration we decided to press our wine and put into a Taransaud barrel. Yesterday, I filled the barrel with water. Today we emptied the water. While it was pouring out of the barrel, we put some in a wine glass to observe. The water had a slight honey […]

Prepping a Tonnellerie Taransaud

There wasn’t much to do to prepare one of the barrels for the journey it will take wine. We simply filled the barrel with water and let it sit over night. This wasn’t much of a task, however for the winemaker that has multiple barrels, it can become time consuming. The Tonnellerie Taransaud website had […]

Racking the Sauvignon Blanc

I am in no rush to bottle the Sauvignon Blanc made from a kit. For the past several days the wine was clearing as the sediment dropped to the bottom of a six-gallon carboy. The bottom resembled a lunar surface. Today was time to rack into a sterilized carboy. I sanitized the equipment with a […]