Updated: Oct 10
Vine to wine season has begun and fall is here to stay. The temps are falling to perfection. We love this time of year. Why you ask? Because we make wine, pick & squeeze pomegranates, and enjoy bug free hiking. We walked the orchard to inspect the trees. We are happy to see the progress. It was great to reflect on where we started to now. Next years we expect to have our first 'You Pick' pomegranate season.
We picked a round of grapes this last week as we had some rain in the forecast. This year is all about the quality of grapes. We have had large batches in previous years but this year we are going small. The main reason, hail. We did a massive vine clean up in early June to reduce the vines to three clusters of grapes max per stem. This allows the vines to concentrate on the growth to only a few clusters of grapes, but what we didn't account for was a massive hail storm. Our pristene clusters were damaged and some beyond repair.
Although our choice of grapes were limited we believe we'll have some amazing wine. We pulled about two liters of mushti which is basically grape juice with a kick. And it was so tasty, it didn't last two days. We'll continue smushing the wine twice a day for the next ten days. Once it's fermented for a bit we'll filter and transfer the wine to a new barrel. The original crushed grapes will kept for a round of raki.
Our garden is still producing tomatoes, eggplants, and cucumbers. The spring onions have popped and the garlic is slowly coming in. Art added new spring greens to our spinach beds and our hot peppers are still poppin. Our trees are bountiful figs, jujube, sugar plums, quince and fall pears. We have about a dozen chestnuts and walnuts on our young trees. And the pomegranates are nearly ready to squeeze and the persimmons aren't far behind. We can't wait for both!
We've also added a few new chickens from a neighbor that was off loading some livestock and have another mama hen sitting on another generation. Art has already started plans to expand the hoop coop and improve the roost section to allow room for more and make space for rude/bully hens. And we caught a coyote carrying away one of our chickens. And let's just say his days were limited.
The pigs got an upgrade to their pig chalet. They now have a secure dutch door and insulated walls for the winter and have moved out of the temporary house.
We picked new one liter bottles for pomegranate season and plan on pasturizing some of the juice this year. We've always squeezed and freezed. If you have any tips about pasturizing large batches of juice for a long shelflife please let us know.