I just got home after a weekend spent chez maman in a quaint country village deep in the wine country.
All of the neighbours have their own vineyards and a formidable, some might say excessive yearly vintage.
For me the best part of any wine process is the actual grape picking. I have very fond childhood memories of harvests.
It was a blazing hot day on Saturday with temperatures sometimes exceeding 31 degrees Celsius in the shade.
With the severe drought persisting throughout August, the grape was ripe a good fortnight sooner than expected. We were asked to help with the harvest and gladly accepted.
Aside for the heat it was still very pleasant and cheerful. The work wasn't that difficult and with about half a dozen people participating we were done in just over an hour. Then we retreated into the cool shadow of the veranda and waited for the heat to pass.
Since only about 8% of the grape was ripe the Saturday harvest was merely a trial run. The majority of the work is yet to come.