I left the world of “strict” wine retail, in which I worked as a wine buyer, to work directly for a vineyard for one reason, and one reason only; I wanted to be closer to the production side of the viticultural equation. For me, the experience of enjoying a glass of wine is deeply impacted by the knowledge of how it came to be, and the more I know about the stunning journey from vine to wine, the more deeply felt is my satisfaction when swirling, smelling, and sipping, and savoring. And I find there is nothing that more profoundly brings home the true magic of wine production then the beautiful rigor of harvest.
The making of wine, done properly, is a near-spiritual endeavor; there are so few other examples of human beings interacting with the earth in such a way that humans can do as humans do (manipulate the land for personal gain), and yet the land benefits, rather than suffers. A glass of wine to me is a symbol of that harmony, that inter-relationship, that strange and strangely mutually beneficial endeavor that is the growing of grapes, and the making of wine. It’s peaceful to drink wine. Very peaceful. A really deep, soulful kind of peaceful.
With with all that said, I’d like to share some remarkable photos with you. Captured by the lens of our own Heidi Nigen, who in addition to being our Marketing and Retail Sales Manager is also a consummate photographic artist (though I doubt she’d ever admit it!), are the individuals at the absolute epicenter of this journey from our mountain to your glass. If it sounds romantic, it is, and it isn’t. Harvest is beautiful, but it’s also torturous, brutal, fatiguing and draining work. The people in the vineyards during harvest are strong in a way most of us can barely imagine; backs as firm as iron yet flexible as a paper clip, with the stamina and faith of saints. They work mind-numbingly long hours, in extraordinary climatic extremes, and they have no choice but to harvest when the time is called, regardless of the weather. They’re remarkable, and I toast them with every delicious glass.