In The Trenches

Fri. March 4

Let me preface this with saying that this is my first blog post ever.  I don't even have a Facebook account, so I'm not used to writing for the world to read. That said, I'll do my best to keep you intrigued and hopefully you'll let me (us) know what you think as well.

Like many of us here at SV, my duties are varied. It'd be difficult to put me in a box with a single label (and even more difficult to put pieces of me in many boxes). On any given day I could wear the hat of Vineyard Manager, Winemaker, Repair Man, Painter, Fork Lift Operator, PR, or Server, but most recently, Trench Drain Cleaner. For those of you who don't know, a trench drain is a trough in the floor running the length of our processing room that collects our waste water. It tends to get a bit funky now and then, and routine cleaning is a must for adequate winery sanitation. Let's just say it's no one's favorite job.

Upon walking to the wall to pick my hat for the day, I saw this new one there, labeled “Trench Cleaner.” I could have sworn it used to say "Ken," but sure enough, that had been scratched out and "Ethan" had been hastily re-written. Lucky for me, our unsuspecting vineyard/cellar helper Tommy happened to be working with me, so following the lead of the great mind before me, I quickly made "Ethan" look like "Tommy." Naturally, I put the hat on his head before he could read the name and with surprising and admirable enthusiasm, he set to work. After a few minutes, I couldn't stand to watch him suffer alone, so the two of us finished up.

Tommy in the trenches

Moral of the story…winemaking isn't always the romantic affair as is typically thought. Much of the process is dedicated to cleaning, scrubbing, and washing. There's no compromise when it comes to a rigorous sanitation regime, and I admit I’m a clean freak.. Just come take a tour of our processing room. Sometimes you just have to get down and dirty. Then, of course, it’s necessary for a nice glass of wine to cleanse your senses.