Clyde pulled in with about 2 tons of Concord grapes last night around 6:30pm. Here they are…you can see the tractor pulling the first of four bins off our trailer:
They smell sooooo good! Fast forward to the last bin of grapes to be processed, when I thought to grab my camera again…I climbed up a ladder to see the view from above:
That’s the hopper the grapes are dumped into…then they travel through the destemmer/crusher, and eventually are pumped into a tank. Since this will be a red wine, we don’t press out the juice right away. We keep the skins in contact with the fermenting wine so we can extract lots of color. Here’s the view into the tank:
And then it’s all over except for the cleaning. We just rinsed everything down last night since it was getting a little late and we didn’t have much light. Here’s a shot inside the destemmer machine:
That cone in the middle with all the holes in it is the part the does the destemming. There is a paddle inside the cone that grabs the stems and shoots them out of the machine while the grapes fall through the holes in the cone to the bottom of the machine. Here’s a closer pic of that cone…you can see the red bits inside the cone, and those are part of the paddle (I’m sure ‘cone’ and ‘paddle’ are absolutely not the correct terminology for these parts!):
Once everything was pulled apart and rinsed off, we went to bed! Today Clyde will have to sanitize it all. I’m off to Rolla today, where I’ll be pouring our wine in the hospitality tent for the Tour of Missouri bicycle race. Maybe I’ll catch a few photos there too. Cheers!