Ever wonder what it would be like to pick wine grapes?
Now you can find out! We're looking for volunteers to help it pick our crop.
It's an incredibly busy but exciting time here at the moment and we're excited about what looks like a very good harvest with lovely high quality grapes.
Kerry Vale Vineyard has three grape varieties; Rondo, Pheonix and Solaris. Each grape varieties ripens at different times which means the workload can be spread over a number of days/weeks.
At this time of year we're continuously monitors the sugar/acidity levels in the grapes to ensure they are picked at just the right time. The most important criterion determining the time for harvesting is the acid level in the grapes. Too high and the wine is sharp to the taste, too low and it is flat and uninteresting. Here at Kerry Vale Vineyard we like the sugar content to be as high as possible which requires a good amount of sun - sometimes difficult to attain in our unpredictable English climate.
Due to the variation in the seasons, harvest time varies from year to year, this year we will be harvesting 18,19,25,26 September.
Kerry Vale Vineyard is a small family run vineyard, so volunteers are essential at this time of year to bring in the vintage.The work is hard but satisfying and for those who enjoy the outdoors there's nothing nicer than working on the vineyard on a sunny day. If you have an interest in wine and wine making, what better way to understand how the process begins than on the vineyard where the grapes are grown. Volunteers are asked to bring gloves if they have them.
Volunteers will hand pick the grapes, cut them off the vines in whole bunches, then they will be put in trays which will be transported to the winery. Volunteer pickers will be asked to start on the vineyards at 8am. They will pick until 1pm and will be rewarded for their efforts with a hearty lunch and a glass of wine on the vineyard. Those enthusiastic volunteers who wish to pick for the remainder of the day are welcome to do so and will have tea and cake at 4pm.
If you'd like to get involved call: 01588 620627 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also check out the vineyards facebook page at www.facebook.com/kerryvalevinevineyard for up to date information on how the grapes are doing!