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Barrique storage Closeup view of vine blossoms Rows of grapevines in summer, about 1 month befor the harvest Panoramic view of Gols in early summer Andreas and Kathrin Sonnenmulde wine bottles Andras and Katrhin standing betwenn growing rows of grapevines View towards the illuminated winery at night View towards the winery Barrique casks

Harvest 2022 done!

Tuesday, November 22, 2022

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View along a row of vines on a sunny day. Beautiful blue colored grapes hang on the vines. You can see blue sky and green covered ground
Ripe Blaufränkisch grapes a short time before harvest.

The 2022 grape harvest is completed. It took a long time, from the beginning of September to mid-November, but with the harvest of our Trockenbeerenauslese, the last grapes are finally in the house and their juice is slowly fermenting in our cellar.

At the beginning it was really summery, but then it became cooler and damp, and therefore the harvest has dragged on comparatively long. In our country, a large part of the harvest is done with harvesters. It is simply faster and with modern equipment the quality of the harvested grapes is so good that a manual harvest is only profitable for very special products.

Three adults and three children walk along a vineyard while laughing, each with a wheelbarrow.
Motivated grape harvest start with the whole family.

When we harvest by hand, it is done with wheelbarrows, as shown in the picture. For the children, of course, this is always the most fun. This was already the case with us parents, but also with the grandparents and great-grandparents. As it is, in a family business that has been running for generations.

Harvesters do the work in an hour for which 10 people would need a whole day. Therefore, we have more opportunities to wait for the right time and the right conditions. The grapes are then harvested very gently and pre-sorted already on the harvesting machine. The result can then be seen in the picture.

A harvesting machine dumps blue grapes onto a harvesting trailer. In the background, a gravel road, vineyards, trees and a tractor.
Grapes are unloaded from the harvesting machine onto the harvesting trailer.

In the following a time-lapse video on which you can see how such a grape harvester moves through the rows.

The final harvest was the Trockenbeerenauslese, Sämling 2022, already mentioned at the beginning. Noble sweet Trockenbeerenauslese are the top of the quality wine pyramid and ripen only in particularly preferred corners of the wine world. But because the grapes for them look so not at all appetizing, it is far too rare to see photos of them. Well, here is one!

A gloved hand holds a grape completely covered in a fungal lawn up to the camera.
Noble-rot affected grapes for a Trockenbeerenauslese.

There is little juice left in the berries, but it is all the more concentrated, and the noble rot has flavored it quite wonderfully. The quantity is small and accordingly rare and valuable are the few liters that come out.

Meanwhile, the juice is slowly fermenting in the cellar, a process that can last until next spring. Now, whith the grape harvest behind us, we’re in slight party mood. The work will continue soon enough anyway.

Finally, a short video - tipping harvested dried berry grapes onto the harvest cart.

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