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First Day of Harvest

There are two days of the year that I look forward to the most in the vineyard…the first day of Harvest and the last.

This year the first day arrived earlier than normal, and that is just fine by me! The vineyard crew eagerly awaits this day all season. Our hard work has produced another bountiful crop, and there’s much excitement as we prepare to bring it in.

Hafner Vineyard Harvest Team on the First Day of Picking.

This is the beginning of my fifth harvest here at Hafner Vineyard and it would seem that my excitement to start picking increases every year. When the first tractor heads to the winery with a gondola full of grapes, I breathe a sigh of relief knowing we are bringing in the best crop we could produce. When the last gondola heads to the winery I breathe a different sigh of relief knowing that we successfully produced another vintage in the vineyard, and now the grapes are in Parke’s hands.

Harvesting the Chardonnay at Hafner Vineyard.

After picking a few acres of Chardonnay, we are back in the groove, and our nervousness subsides. As the vineyard manager, it is an honor to see the pride on the faces of the crew as we begin to pick another year’s crop. Several of the guys have 20 or more years nurturing these vineyards and they take their work very seriously, so I know they feel a great sense of accomplishment today.

Riding high above the vines in the driver’s seat of the harvester, I look out over the vineyard and take in the scene. Harvest is here. Today is the beginning of the end of another vintage in the vineyard and that gives us all reason to smile.

Harvesting the Chardonnay at Hafner Vineyard. (1)