It’s wine season around here and my husband and the in-laws have been super busy harvesting and pressing the grapes to make wine in the coming months. I stayed home with Isabella (cause who needs a teething tenth month old at 6am) but I sent along the camera and got LOTS of pictures.
For two days Nico and his family got up early to go to the vineyards. Or at least that was the plan on the first day. The first day the Ape (pronounced ah-peh) wouldn’t start. The Ape is a wonderful little Italian alternative to a pick-up truck. Sure its not gonna haul too much heavy stuff (although it did pretty well with 20+ crates of grapes). But it can handle its own. The best part about the Ape is the way you drive it. It has a steering wheel like a bike. A new battery and it was ready to go!
Doesn't the Ape look like it belongs to 50 years ago? It just might be that old...
They arrived at the first vineyard about 10am instead of 6am. This was ok except Nico didnt get to sleep anymore (cranky baby) and by 10am the sun is a little higher in the sky and its a little warmer out making the work a little harder. Still the view isnt bad.
They spent a couple of hours harvesting grapes and managed to clear one of the vineyards. My grandfather in law has several pieces of farmland. Two serve as only vineyards and the third has a small section for grapes and is also where he grows everything else from potatoes, fava beans, almonds, citrus trees, olives, artichokes – so many good things!
Here you can see one of my sister-in-laws getting ready to cut a bunch – don’t the grapes look fantastic? The grapes are so purple they seem blue/black.
They harvested only these this time around, most of the white grapes werent quite ready yet. But they make both white and red wines normally.
And the wine – its good, I’ve used some of the white from last year in my cooking. Its quite nice to not have to spend money on wine!
Here some shots of the vineyards themselves.
I like this shot, below, I aged it using photoshop of course, but you can tell that the land, the practice of growing and harvesting grapes is essentially the same it would have been 50 or even 100 years ago.
Harvesting grapes is a family affair. Had Isabella been a little order we would’ve been out there too. Nico and his sisters grumble about having to go out there. They’ve been doing it for years. However I am still in touristy-so-thats-how-you-do-that-oh-my-gosh-I-live-in-Italy mode where all this stuff is new and exciting to me.
I never thought of grape vines being so tall. Sardinians are traditionally short in stature but these are a little under 5 feet tall (I think).
After cutting all the grapes they load them up in the back of the Ape (see small but mighty, much like the people of Sardinia.)
Speaking of small but mighty people, below is my mother-in-law Anna and Nico’s grandfather.
Nico’s grandfather is also called Nico (short for Nicolo’) Don’t you think he also kinda looks like a much older version of Patrick Stewart…
Check out Anna. Would you take her on in an arm wrestling contest? I wouldn’t!
Harvesting might be done for now (they may have to go back to harvest the white grapes later, hopefully they turn out well) but wine season isn’t over yet. They sit in a shaded space before moving on to the next process – sorting and pressing the grapes!
Even though I was stuck being spectator for this grape harvest it was still amazing to see all the wonderful pictures. I have a lot more that I wasn’t able to fit here. Check out the rest over on Flickr (you’ll even get a sneak peak at what’s to come!) :).