Good as new

October 23rd, 2012

For most of the year the team of people who work for us are fully occupied, and usually there are only a couple of moments in the calendar when we can play ‘catch up’, and do the jobs that we have been meaning to do for a while. A couple of our guys are currently working full time to thoroughly clean (with pressure washers) the baskets that we use for collecting grapes. Obviously they are washed as we go along, during the harvest itself, but when we have finished we give them one final clean before they go back into hibernation for another 51 weeks. (The cases that is, not the guys that are washing them!)

In the cellar the fermentations are well under way, and in the case of some tanks, perhaps only a few more days from their conclusion. (Strangely not all tanks progress at the same speed despite the fact that they are seeded at the same time, with the same yeasts, and then maintained at similar temperatures). Whilst we wait, our handyman Fran has been taking advantage of the slight lull in proceedings….. This time he has completely stripped our compressor, painted it, replaced many parts, and then put it back together again, with only a few pieces left over at the end (I am joking about the last part). The result is that we now have a compressor that looks like new, even though it is nearly as old as our wine cellar.

The compressor is a vital piece of kit, and is used for many different functions, perhaps the most important of which is during the bottling – many of the functions on the bottling line are powered by compressed air, and without it we would be sticking labels and putting capsules on by hand. 

With my recent (ongoing) back injury perhaps I could ask Fran to strip me down and give me a few replacement parts (but maybe not the orange paint, I don’t want to end up looking like George Hamilton)!

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