We have had a very productive year on our little ¼ acre piece of the planet, with tomatoes being our biggest producer, followed very closely by grapes.
I have been letting the kids pick and eat (or feed the chickens) grapes a few handsful or bucketsful at a time for about a month now, harvested 11 pounds for our neighborhood harvest party, and just today picked the remaining lot – over 40 pounds worth – which puts us at over 50 pounds of grapes for the year, all from a single, productive vine.
This fantastic abundance will allow us to make 5 gallons of grape wine, with plenty of leftover grapes to spare for snacking and sharing with friends. I am so grateful that this wonderful fruit bounty occurred in the very season that I learned to make wine.
With any luck, and barring any giant yeasty mishaps, this time next year we’ll be having a wine tasting. Rhubarb, cherry, blackberry and now grape are all in the works and should be at least drinkable, if not downright delightful, by fall of ’10.
So, in the ancient way of giving thanks for a plentiful harvest, I hereby give a shout out to Dionysus, God of wine and agriculture – Thanks dude! Your timing is awesome! As well as an equally hearty thanks to my friend, Kristin, for her winemaking tutelage and patience with my panicked, emails and phone calls about wines behaving badly – you’re my wine lifeline, lady!
With the end of season in sight, I’m glad to have one more fruit off of the vine and into the kitchen. Now if only the tomatoes would wrap up so that I could plant some Swiss chard in their place…