Saturday, May 3, 2008

It's saturday, it's sunny and I'm feeling, well, optimistic

I received wine from the Humboldt vineyard yesterday; 2002,2003,2004(two) and 2005 releases. Not being able to wait for Dan (my bad) I had to bring home one of the two 2004's. Instead of rambling on about a complex pinot with a brambly raspberry, almost green peppery nose and a great balanced mouth-fill that hit you with nice acids, under-ripe berries, a little earth, a little mineral/stone and just a hair of vanilla I'll cut to the chase and say, well, it was good and it all came in at 13.0% Alc. This is, of course, significant to us as it's from the vineyard we are getting our grapes from and it tells us the best way it could (by tasting) that you can produce good pinot from this vineyard. Now, of course, it means that it's up to us to not screw it up!

So where does this leave us?

We've got grapes, they should be good and we're still looking for somewhere to produce our wine.

On the crush front after many supportive but rejecting replies (per Dan's post below) we've found a couple folks that have expressed willingness to work with us, both deciding to make exception to their normal minimum requirements in order to give the little guys a shot. This is a bigger deal than it might sound like as the sheer lack of any real scale means we are going to be more work per dollar for these guys than another, less-macro sized, customer would be. One in Petaluma and one in Sebastopol. On Wednesday we are going to press palms, check out the facilities and discuss a few more of the details such as:

1) what kind of day-to-day involvement can we have
2) what kind of consulting (if any) will be available to us
3) when things are all added up, what kinds of per case costs are we really looking at
4) what kinds of flexibilities are there in scale, style, approach, etc...

Once we gathered all of this it's then time for Dan and I to go back, crunch numbers, discuss logistics, risks, pros and cons and decide whether we are going to work with one of these to facilities or if we do indeed take over a chunk of Dan and Terry and Calvin's basement/garage and go for it ourselves.

So for those of you scoring (uh, I mean keeping score) at home:

Wahluke Slope Syrah
We have grapes
We have a willing basement
We've got the minimal equipment necessary to pull it off
We have one 1 year old barrel

Humboldt Pinot Noir
We have grapes
We have the promise of a crush facility
We are nuts enough to even ponder taking this on in a garage in Glen Park
We have one new barrel reserved and will secure the additional neutral/s later this summer

It's starting to look like our plans aren't out to pasture after all.

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