Shenandoah Valley of CaliforniaCharles Spinetta Winery and Wildlife Art Gallery
If you are a broker, principal, or fellow professional winemaker interested in purchasing quantities of premium wine, click here.Our sister site for brokers, principals, and fellow professional winemakers to buy our family's winegrapes.Business Hours and Map to the Winery. Also look at the "Intersections Guide" so you don't get lost.An online tour of the vineyards, winemaking facilities, tasting room and art gallery, precipitation history, industry links.The wildlife art gallery, wine label collection, original paintings for sale, and more art for sale.Laura's custom framing shop will frame your family heirlooms - make an appointment soon.Current releases of dry reds and "fun and yummy" sweet wines.Current news, our flyer, recipes, and dozens of illustrated stories about winemaking and field work. Good reading!Order form for shipping - you must be 21 years of age.
_____Let's follow the "Fun & Yummy White" through the 2000 harvest. This wine will be ready to bottle the first week of December, and it will be available to purchase in time for Christmas. All the equipment is ready - new tanks, a new crusher / destemmer, new pumps & snack food in the fridge.

_____Since we bought a more powerful crusher / destemmer, we had local blacksmith, Al, construct a better, bigger hopper. You can see the crew positioning the hopper in the frame.
The new hopper comes in!
As a result of all this newfangled efficiency, we might not have as many "pizza nights" this year. That's when we know we're going to work past 6:00 P.M. and we order a couple pies from a great place down in Plymouth.
Fun & Yummy Grapes! LEFT: Prior to picking, a random sample of Chenin Blanc is taken to determine its percent sugar (brix).

RIGHT: The view inside a refractometer - the device that measures sugar content. Looks like 25%...
How sweet it is!
Working Hard! The crew picks the vineyard by hand beginning at sunrise -- the grapes are best picked before they warm up with the sun's heat -- plus it's easier on us to work when it's cooler!
Hopper. LEFT: A bin of Chenin Blanc grapes gets weighed (about half a ton) and then dumped into the hopper. To retain more flavor, the grapes are crushed as soon as possible after they are picked.

RIGHT: Jim pitchin' the stems as they're thrown from our crusher / destemmer. The pulp, skin & seeds are separated by a series of augers and a rotating cage inside the c/d. The broken-up grapes get pumped into the bladder press.
Jim pitchin' stems.
Defranceschi Bladder Press Drip drip drip drip drip
Twenty tons of grapes fit inside the bladder press. Grapes fall in between the canister and bladder that inflates and deflates over a three hour period.
Enological Fallout Defranceschi Bladder Press
Dry husks and seeds fall out of the canister at the end of the pressing cycle and are dumped into bins.
Goin' for a ride Flyin' Out!
The remains are high in nutrients - animals eat some and the rest degrades. A view from the (bouncing) driver's seat while spreading it out.
Last stop -- the sample valve! And here's where we run into one of the inherent problems with the internet. You can see the "Fun & Yummy White" but you can't taste it! This juice you see undergoes various filtrations and other processes to ready it for bottling in about 1 1/2 month's time.

Click here to get a virtual taste of the fun & yummy!
(Ooops! Don't spill it!)
Click here now to fill up your glass and try again!
A Virtual Tasting
Amador County
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Charles Spinetta Winery, Spinetta Family Vineyards, Zinetta, and the CSW Logo are registered trademarks of Charles J. Spinetta. Unless otherwise specified, all images and copy contained within the domain are Copyright 1984-2019 Charles J. Spinetta. All rights reserved. Charles Spinetta Winery and Wildlife Art Gallery 12557 Steiner Road, Plymouth, California 95669, USA, telephone: (209) 245-3384, facsimile: (209) 245-3386