Didn't Make it to the Fiesta? Here's what you missed from Harvest 2016!
Imagine a steep ski slope, maybe 40-45 degrees steep, a Double Black Diamond slope, a monster slope. This daunting ski run is called Clos de la Tech’s Domaine Lois Louise “Cote Sud.”
Now plant thousands of pinot noir grapes on this steep slope—the rows running from north to south, downhill, tightly packed with vines, tighter and closer than most California vineyards. Farming: , mowing, weeding, pruning, tipping and harvesting all present big challenges.
Clos de la Tech celebrated the harvest season with a grand fiesta that began with scores of the winery’s friends and family, and scores of Cypress employees and their families, going down the rows of this steep vineyard, clippers in hand, snipping off tiny clusters of ripe pinot noir and dropping them into yellow bins.
When the harvesters got to the end of the row, way down below, where they were unable to see the road and trucks at the top of the vineyard, they began to trudge back up the slope.
Oh, and it’s nearly 96 degrees, clear sky, and the harvest sun is beating down. Rivulets of sweat splash on the dirt, adding a mild salt seasoning to next year’s harvest. It’s all terroir.
The reward for this labor was a fabulous Mexican buffet in the barrel cave, a cool 60 degrees after the heat and humidity on the slopes. Two women made fresh tortillas from masa balls hand-patted and pressed and baked on a huge concave pottery griddle, a comal. The aroma was Mexico distilled.
TJ’s Herradura margarita machine churned out frozen delights and Milagro’s pina coladas gave the party the proper festive spirit. Generous vats of guacamole and salsa with totopos, delicious carne asada, rice, chile verde, fajita chicken and vegetables and a whole roasted suckling pig from Donato’s Enoteca nourished the hungry harvesters.
Mariachi Azteca performed. Dr. Rodgers distributed tequila shots from his criss-crossed bandaleros. People were happy. They danced. They ate. They drank. And the children broke the fierce bull piñata, and rainbows of chocolates and candies burst onto the floor. A good time was had by all. Let’s do it again next year.
Happy harvest. Feliz cosecha.