Harvest weekend number one is over at Somerset Ridge Vineyard and Winery! A crew of 65 volunteer pickers were greeted by Cindy and Dennis Reynolds at the winery early Sunday morning before heading into the vines.
The crew harvested the Chardonel grapes first, which is a white wine grape that produces a high quality wine with varietal character. Chardonel is distinguished by its superior wine quality combined with high productivity and cold hardiness superior to its acclaimed parent, 'Chardonnay'. Next the crew moved into the Traminette vines. Traminette is a late mid-season white wine grape which produces wine with pronounced varietal character likened to one of its parents, 'Gewürztraminer'. Traminette is distinguished by its superior wine quality combined with good productivity, partial resistance to several fungal diseases, and cold hardiness superior to its acclaimed parent, 'Gewürztraminer'
All of this is bound to be more information than you wanted!
Dennis and his crew of 4 "cellar rats" worked until very late in the evening, crushing and pressing the day's harvest, resulting in tanks full of fresh juice!
Dennis told the guest harvesters to watch for 2010 Chardonel which will be on the shelves next year and to remember they helped picked the grapes!
Lunch is served
One of the events our pickers enjoy is our Gourmet Harvest Lunch complete with wine! I have been the chief cook and bottle washer at the vineyard for the last 8 years. This year, I have the help from Donna Nagle and her delightful helpers at Molly's Table . Using the traditional recipes of Somerset Ridge, Donna is making it possible for this old lady to retire, maybe! The lunch was a refreshing menu of Greek Salad, Grilled Chicken Skewers, Dolmas, Pita Bread, fresh Tomatoes from the Somerset Ridge organic garden, and for dessert, Koularakia, a Greek Cookie. The wine Cindy and Dennis served was Flyboy Red and a Traminette wine, Oktoberfest.
Harvest will continue over the next several weeks, but the Winery Tasting Room is open Wednesday through Saturday, 11am to 5 pm. On Sunday, the hours are 12 noon to 5pm.