Del Farnum called yesterday to say he was picking Cabernet grapes early Saturday morning and asking if I could help with the crushing. When I arrived at noon, all that was left was clean up and tasting to see how the barrels are coming along. Del has a nifty machine that removes almost all the stems, spits them out to the side and funnels the grapes into the holding bin. The Cabernet grapes did not seem to have much juice, and Del will be back picking another load tomorrow. I wish him well.
The owner of the vineyard from whom Del buys the grapes was there to assist with the crushing. He had never seen any part of the process before. We adjourned downstairs to the tasting room and sampled a few barrels including a 2016 Cabernet. I may eventually be able to tell the difference between different grape varietals and the wine produced from each.
For a break I buck and bounce along the back roads in the truck with KXPR, the local classical music station, playing on the radio. Notwithstanding the fall equinox, it is still high summer with the the deep green of the valley oaks against the dried out golden fields. The last few miles into Fiddletown are more sheltered by trees. I look to the hills where my help comes from, my help comes from the Lord. One of my favorite psalms.