Donkey & Goat

Berkeley's first natural winery, crafting wines
from sustainably farmed vineyards since 2004.

First Harvest of 2007

We harvested 1.9 tons of nearly organic chardonnay 9 days ago and I have been meaning to write about harvest ever since them.

Harvest itself seems to follow a rhythm that becomes second nature. After a fun East Bay Vintner tasting, we drove down the the Brosseau Vineyard and spent the night at their lovely B&B. The B&B is great – we just tend to get there too late and start harvest too early to really enjoy it.

On the morning of harvest, we got up at 5:30, checked our new walkie talkies (too make life easier) and headed out in different directions. Tracey took an ATV out into the vineyard to manage the pick. I drove the truck over to the scales for loading. Picking starts at 6 am. The grapes tasted great and I think they will get better over the next few years. Bill Brosseau‘s commitment to going organic and his father’s hard work are already paying off.

At 11, we finished with our 6 rows. Tonnage is down again this year – 1.9 tons which works out to about 1 ton to the acre. We started the trip back north and called my parents to check on our daughter and Tom, our harvest intern, to check on the winery.

By 3, we are back and sorting. We sort, then foot stomp and then press. We had a great turn out for our start of harvest party. 30 people sorting, stomping, eating, drinking and letting the kids drive the fork lift. And of course, cleaning…

Happy Harvest!

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