Journey: Thoughts and Reflections along the path. 

Sheldon Haynie
 
May 30, 2013 | Sheldon Haynie

Bottling party

Bottling wine by hand is a labor intensive process. Each case must be opened, emptied onto a table, each bottle filled, corked, foiled and labeled and then the cases stacked. A good crew can do about 30 cases an hour, or a bottle every 10 seconds on average. The actual rate is a bit higher, as there is downtime for changing over wines and  blending that may be limited by availability of pumps and tanks.

 

We recently helped bottle 250 cases of Rhone varietals, for a client who's vineyard we are managing, (We will probably have their wines to release next year) and basically showed the limitation of our corker, a "Ferrari" floor model which is avaialble broadly. After 3000 strokes the jaws were loose and the hands were sore. We made a quick trip to Paso Robles to the Vintner Vault and picked up a "professional" model which is welded not bolted together and has stainless rather than Brass jaws. We'll see if it has the durability to stand up to the 400 case weekends we are planning for June 8/9 and later in July/August. 

If this one doesn't hold up, then were going to step up to a "Rapid 12" from Switzerland, at a 5X increase in price.

 

Time Posted: May 30, 2013 at 9:19 AM
Sheldon Haynie
 
May 12, 2013 | Sheldon Haynie

Wine walks and Camels

Life at Lightheart Cellars occasionally take a turn for the weird. Today was the second day of active farming in the Coyote Springs vineyard. We're working on trellis, irrigation and general vine training. Today we had a field crew of about 15 guys from Quality Farm Labor come and sucker and shoot thin. 

Time Posted: May 12, 2013 at 8:02 PM