Humans of the Vine: Bottling

"This machine will produce about 1000 bottles an hour"

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With the crew operating the last bottling until next season, the pressure is on to make sure that this selection of Marquette perfectly finds its home in each bottle.  While bottling doesn't happen quite often, it does involve many patient hands in the process (And not just robotic hands either). Some of these patient hands include the Vineyard Manager and Head Winemaker Ethan Joseph, tasting room manager and Gallery Coordinator Rhiannon Johnson, as well as our Vineyard Assistants Josh Stecker and CJ Buzzy.

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The bottling process simply begins as plain, empty bottles are lined up and sent down a conveyer belt into our handy and efficient "bottling machine".  This machine is where a majority of our bottling is actually conducted.

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When entering the machine, the bottles are circled around on a carousel and pumped full of that good red stuff. Once they are precisely full enough the machine then corks the bottles and they move on down the line.

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We all know that little plastic wrapping we have to tear through in order to uncork and pour ourselves a glass; well that's the next step! PVC covers shoot down and are shrunk with heat to each bottle neck. Directly following, labels are spun around and stuck to each bottle.

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Once the completed bottles exit the machine, we need someone to catch them on the other side!  Strong arms needed for this job as the winery assistants lift and pack the full bottles into boxes and then stack those boxes onto pallets where they can be plastic wrapped and stored. Not only are they there to catch the bottles, but this is also a necessary step for quality control.

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Bottling wine requires a great deal of diligence and patience, something that our workers here are very experienced with.  Now you can see how our beloved wine is transformed into the bottle you have on your wine rack at home.  Come on over and experience a tasting, there's plenty of Marquette to go around!

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Authored By: Beth Abbott

Rhubarb-Ginger Jam and Blue Cheese Crostini

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By Lisa Cassell-Arms Recipes for Rhubarb-Ginger Jam abound.  This one has only three ingredients and is foolproof.  It’s sweet-tart, really tasty and you can use it in sweet or savory dishes. If you have a batch of rhubarb that's very red, you will get a lovely pink jam. Mine is mostly green, so hence- green jam. It turns out that the red color doesn't mean the rhubarb is sweeter or riper, it's simply a different variety - red or green, they both work equally well.  Here I've used it to top a blue cheese crostini.  The combination of sweet/tart jam with the salty blue is delightful.  You can also use the jam on scones, muffins or toast, or swirl it into Greek yogurt. Or, use it as a glaze for pork or chicken, or as a foil for blue cheese or paté smeared on a baguette.  The tart jam and salty blue cheese of this crostini call out for a lively and sweet aperitif- try a splash of Duet Ice Wine over ice.

 Rhubarb crostini and jam

Rhubarb crostini and jam

Rhubarb-Ginger Jam

4 cups Rhubarb, chopped 2 3/4 cups sugar 1/4 cup fresh ginger, finely grated

Put all ingredients in a heavy bottom saucepan and heat over medium-high.  Stir frequently until sugar dissolves and mixture begins to bubble.  Bring to a boil and then reduce heat to medium-low and stir frequently for about 20 minutes, allowing mixture to thicken.

Test the temperature with a candy thermometer- when it reads about 220 degrees F, remove the pot from the heat and pour into clean jar or heat-proof bowl and cool.

Rhubarb-Ginger Jam and Blue Cheese Crostini

1/2 baguette, thinly sliced 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil 4 oz. good blue cheese Handful of fresh arugula 1/4 cup rhubarb ginger jam

Toast the baguette slices in a grill pan over medium high heat.  Brush each slice with olive oil and top with crumbled blue cheese.  Arrange a leaf or two of arugula on the cheese and top with a small dollop of rhubarb-ginger jam.

Serve with Duet Ice Wine over ice.

Check out Lisa's blog at:  Seasonsinvermont.com

 Rhubarb-Ginger Jam and Blue Cheese Crostini

Rhubarb-Ginger Jam and Blue Cheese Crostini

Strawberry Rhubarb Pie with Almonds

Bu Lisa Cassell-Arms I have no idea where this particular recipe originated, I've been making it, or some form of it for decades.  My husband loves strawberry rhubarb pie, so it's been his birthday "cake" for as long as we've been married and I've been rolling out pie crusts. It's a really tasty, old fashioned pie - when served with vanilla (or almond) ice cream- will transport you to your grandma's backyard on a summer day.  I served this pie with Shelburne Vineyard Whimsey Meadow Rosé - kind of sweet and tart, just like the pie.

 Strawberry rhubarb Pie with Almonds

Strawberry rhubarb Pie with Almonds

Strawberry Rhubarb Pie with Almonds

 Begin by making the crust:

(Make your piecrust made in a food processor - it is really easy)

1/4 cup almonds, sliced 2 1/4 cups flour 1 teaspoon salt 2 sticks butter, chopped into small pieces 1/4 - 1/3 cup ice water

To make the crust:

In a small pan over medium heat, toast the almonds until they are golden and fragrant.  Remove from heat.  Pulse the almonds in a food processor until coarsely ground.  Add the flour, salt and continue to pulse until finely ground.

Add butter to the flour mixture and pulse until it resembles coarse meal.  With the processor running, slowly add cold water until the dough just starts to hold together. (you'll want to stop just before it clumps up)  Turn the dough onto a clean counter and press together into flattened ball.  Divide the ball in half, press into two flat disks and cover each completely in plastic wrap. Refrigerate dough for at least 30 minutes.

To make the filling and assemble the pie:

6 cups strawberries, chopped 4 cups rhubarb, chopped 1/2 cup sugar 1/2 cup dark brown sugar 1/3 cup cornstarch or tapioca 3 tablespoons flour 2 tablespoons butter, chilled and cut into small bits 1 egg, whisked with a tablespoon of water 1 tablespoon confectioners sugar 1 tablespoon water 1/4 cup sliced almonds

 In a large bowl, combine the strawberries, rhubarb, sugar, brown sugar, cornstarch (or tapioca) and the flour.  Stir until well combined and then let sit at room temperature for about 15 minutes.

While the fruit is sitting, roll out the pie crust.  On a well floured board or counter, roll out one of the disks of dough until it is about and inch larger than the diameter of the pie plate.  Carefully lift the dough into the pie plate and settle the edges into the plate so that the dough is not stretched.  Trim the edges to allow for about a one inch overhang.  Put the pie crust back in the refrigerator to chill while rolling out the dough for the lattice top.

Roll the second disk out in the same manner as the first.  Using a fluted cutter, or a knife, cut the dough into 10 equal strips.

Remove the pie crust from the fridge and quickly fill it with the fruit filling.  Lay the longest strip across the middle of the pie, then lay the other longest strip across the pie in the opposite direction.  Continue to add lattice strips, alternating sides in a basket weave manner, one under and then one over.  Tuck the edges under all around the pie and crimp.  Paint the crust and lattice with egg wash and dot the pie with butter.

Place the pie on a foil lined baking sheet with edges (arguably the most important part of this recipe if you want to avoid the bubbling fruit filling from covering the bottom of your oven like epoxy.)  Bake at 400 for about 20 minutes, then reduce the oven temperature to 375 and bake for approximately 45 more minutes.  Check the pie at 30 minutes to make sure the crust isn’t getting too brown.  If so, cover with a pie collar or foil for the remainder of the baking time.

While the pie is baking, you can make the crunchy almonds to sprinkle on top.  Mix the confectioners sugar and water in a bowl. Toss the almonds in the mixture and spread on a small, parchment lined baking sheet.  Bake on the top rack of the oven for about 10 minutes, or until lightly browned (you can use the same oven the pie is in).  When the almonds are golden, remove from oven and cool.

When the pie is bubbling and golden, remove from oven and sprinkle with almonds.  Let the pie cool completely before serving.

Whimsey Meadow Rosé is great with this pie!  Not only does the color match gorgeously, but the sweet/tart flavor profile really works.

Check out Lisa's food, wine and travel blog at www.seasonsinvermont.com

 rolling out piecrust

rolling out piecrust

 bowl of strawberries

bowl of strawberries

 Rhubarb

Rhubarb

 Pie collage

Pie collage

 pie up close

pie up close