After covering the Good Guys 2011 Western Nationals Rod and Custom Show in Pleasanton, California (Hot Rods), we has a chance to explore the region. We were surprised by the number of local Wineries in the Region. We spent a wonderful afternoon exploring and tasting – what a great end to a fantastic weekend of Photographic Fun. We also snuck into he vineyards for some Grape shots – it is almost ready for “The Crush” as you can tell by these plump beauties!
Harvest is the picking of the grapes and in many ways the first step in wine production. Grapes are either harvested mechanically or by hand. The decision to harvest grapes is typically made by the winemaker and informed by the level of sugar (called Brix), acid (TA or Titratable Acidity as expressed by Tartaric acid equivalents) and pH of the grapes. Other considerations include phrenological ripeness, berry flavor, tannin development (seed color and taste). Overall disposition of the grapevine and weather forecasts are taken into account.
Crushing is the process when gently squeezing the berries and breaking the skins to start to liberate the contents of the berries. Destemming is the process of removing the grapes from the rachis (the stem which holds the grapes). In traditional and smaller-scale wine making, the harvested grapes are sometimes crushed by trampling them barefoot or by the use of inexpensive small-scale crushers.