2012 Grape Harvest
This year we had plenty of sunshine. The October 11th (Thursday) was the last sunny day. To celebrate the end of the summer we made a fire in the backyard and the next day it started raining.
I had left a message to Ron at the end of September, but I did not hear from him. I thought that I was out of luck this year. When he called me on Wednesday, he explained that instead of us picking the grapes, they could pickup the grapes and this way I would do only one trip to get the grape juice. I thought that this would work out great.
Well, things change fast. When I got a call on Saturday morning, he was saying that the plan did not work out, because there wasn’t enough pickers, and asked me if I could come over to pick the grapes either Saturday or the next day.
Lisa, Kubi, and I had already some plans, but what is more important than grapes? And besides, it is only once a year. Two hours later we dropped Amanda at grandparents, and we were at the vineyard 45 minutes later.
Luckily it wasn’t raining, it wasn’t cold, and there were so much grapes that it took the three of us less than two hours to fill the 10 buckets for a total of 264 lbs of grapes. We were only halfway through our first line of vines when we were done. In previous years we would be searching for grapes and we would go through at least double the vines to pick this much grapes.
Also the grapes didn’t have any mold on them probably due to such a long dry weather, they looked very healthy. Here is some pictures.
I want to document how I did the yeast starter so that I can remember it next year. The three carboys were completely full to the top, but needed some head space. The yeast starter needs to be evenly divided into each carboy, and the three containers to keep the extra juice (I did not have an extra carboy or another large container).
Preparing the yeast starter: Pour 2 cups (500 mL) of juice from one of the carboys into a measuring cup. Take one liter from each carboy into a pitcher. Do the same for the second pitcher. Transfer one liter from each carboy to each apple cider container. Pitch the yeast into the measuring cup. After the bubbles form on the surface (a few hours of wait), pour 250 mL into each pitcher. After the bubbles form on the surface of the liquid in the pitchers (overnight wait), pour one liter from the first pitcher into each carboy. From the second pitcher pour one liter into each Apple Cider container.