Last weekend was chock full of wedding-ness. We decided a couple months back that we would purchase a barrel of wine for the wedding. My dad and future father-in-law wanted to split a barrel, so whatever is left after the wedding they keep in their cellars (they take the term Wine-o to a whole new level). However, knowing our family and friends I don’t think there will be as much wine left as they think….
So we caravanned to Livermore early Saturday morning, and by the way, nobody told me that Livermore was so awesome. They have a great downtown area and there happened to be a rodeo in town the weekend that we were there. Oh and the dogs, there were dogs everywhere. We are currently dog crazy because we finally made the decision to get one, but he won’t be ours until this fall/winter (more on that later). ANYWAYS, this got off topic quick, bottom line: Chase and I decided we will most definitely be returning to Livermore.
Driving through vineyards is so relaxing to me. You are surrounded by rolling hills and lush greenery and each vineyard has a beautiful tuscan style house set up on a hill. A few of them had run-down barns and those are just as beautiful if you ask me. The place we bottled the wine at was called Tenuta Winery.
My talented almost brother-in-law is great with photoshop and helped me in designing our very own wine label, which made us feel super cool when everyone at the winery was like, “Wow thats super cool!” There is a running joke between my dad and Chase’s dad about a dowry, so of course Chase wanted to name the wine “The Dowry”, and of course we did.
The owners of the winery are actually quite genius. After giving tours of the winery they show visitors the warehouse where they bottle, foil, and label the wine, then they tell people that if they want to bottle some wine they can. The owners get free labor, and people have a blast bottling wine. Which is exactly what we did. We got there at about 10:30am and did not leave until around 4pm. We drank wine out of giant vats as we were bottling it and got to meet a ton of new people. It was really just an excuse to get day drunk with our families, and there were no complaints here.
We got a pretty good assembly line going. At the beginning of the line the bottles were blown out so there wasn’t any dust in them, then they are placed on this machine that fills them and then corks them. Next you have someone putting the foil caps on them and then pressing the foil with another machine. After that they are either put on a labeler machine or there are a couple of people who are putting the labels on by hand.
I tried my hand at the machines that filled and corked the bottles and I immediately jammed the cork machine and slowed the line down to a crawl. Nobody was surprised. I played it safe in the label department after that….
We had so much fun bottling wine that we stayed all day and helped them bottle hundreds more bottles. John wants to buy and barrel wine for his birthday now as well. There’s nothing like alcohol to bond and blend a family! Just kidding, well kind of.
Have you ever bottled wine before? I highly recommend it if you haven’t. Let me know in the comments!