Thursday, June 25, 2009


Racking the wine is the cellar rat's worst nightmare. First, you have to carefully transfer the top 90-95% of the wine from one barrel to another. Then you have to take the sluge from one barrel and put it in another.

The you have to clean out the old barrel, and then move to the next barrel and start all over again. It's like doing a Chinese jigsaw puzzle with 800 pound pieces. And it's dirty. And it's messy. And everyone gets soaking wet even if you didn't think you were going to. It's an awful way to spend a day. Hoses everywhere. Sloshing. Moving big barrels. Ugh!

Of course, there was a catch. We were moving some wine from steel fermenters and plastic drums to oak for aging. Problem? We had no more barrels. So my friend Chris Terry (yes, he who helped paint the barn) came with me as I drove a truck out to Long Island to buy some used oak barrels (we're a small winery, we can't afford ten $1,200 barrels). We buy used ones and then add new staves.

Chris was supposed to keep me company, but he wasn't much use on the ride back!

Here's a few pictures of the team working the Baco Noir for late this year. This is the Baco's second racking. We're a little compulsive.


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