The Night Shift
Fruit of the vine. Yum. I’m guilty of not really paying attention to what it takes to get a bottle of wine to my table. So I asked a prominent California Delta wine grape grower and vintner if I could tag along while they labored to bring in their crush-ready crop of pinot noir grapes. For several fall harvest seasons I’ve been wanting to chase the odd looking machines that trundle up and down rows of wine grapes in the California Delta starting in early evening. The Clarksburg area, just south of Sacramento, has a state-wide reputation, and beyond, for the quality and variety of grapes and wines produced there. It’s a part of the Delta that I wander from time to time and when I see these unusual machines on rolling stilts at dusk, headlights blazing, I’ve made mental notes to ask permission to ride along. Unfortunately mental notes aren’t worth the paper they’re written on. But this season I say to myself, if not now when?