Monday, March 30, 2015

Vintage vittles - Monday 30th March: silica, scones and sampling

A new week dawns and we spent much of today with some visitors from our UK importers. It was as clear and bright an autumn morning as one could wish, and we sent them out first thing with our horse-drawn sprayer to cover our vineyard with Preparation 501. This biodynamic preparation contains silica, enhances photosynthesis, and is ideal to add to the vineyard to support the vines in the final few days before our harvest begins.

Following the crisp morning in the vineyard, a few warm pinwheel scones at the winery door gave us a chance to start the week well and discuss the plans for the beginning of harvest. Controversy briefly reigned when certain members of the team decided to consume their sweet, fruit scones with cheese, but we are a forgiving bunch and the sides agreed to differ peacefully...

After this small carb and caffeine hit, we kept our guests busy and sent them out to put together the samples needed for our pre-harvest analysis. We are watching our fruit like the proverbial hawks at the moment; we pick a bit later than many in the valley, but are waiting for the perfect balance before we make our move.

A morning spent in the vines deserved some vinous refreshment and Clive, our winemaker, provided exactly that with a taste through our range, with our full vintage wine-making team all contributing their points of view and opinions. This year, we have vintage interns from Chile, Austria and France joining our permanent team from UK, New Zealand and Sweden, so there's always some lively debate and conversation! To fuel the discussion, Marcia provided them with some of her world-famous (or at least they should be) corned beef sandwiches. Marcia's sandwich-making philosophy is that if the dressings and ingredients aren't oozing out of the sides of your sandwich then you probably don't have enough in there yet!

Friday, March 27, 2015

Vintage vittles - Friday 27 March: Sunshine, citrus and spaghetti

Today got off to a chilly start and there was a genuine taste of the autumnal weather just around the corner. Our winemaking team were down in the cellars preparing the base wine for our sparkling wine production for bottling, and also hard at work on a top secret project (watch this space).

Morning tea was therefore a very welcome vibrant and sticky lemon yoghurt cake. Fluffy enough to be moreish, dense enough to provide energy for the rest of the day and citrus-fragranced enough to wake up even the sleepiest of cellar-folk.

That kick-start seemed also to wake up the sunshine, and suddenly we were back to the views and blue skies that we love. With harvest just around the corner, the vines full of enticing fruit and it's hard to resist the temptation to wander the rows tasting! Fortunately our guinea fowl are much more interested in seeds and beetles than grapes, so they are the perfect vineyard companions.

With still a slight chill in the air, Marcia opted for full comfort food for lunch today, with huge plates of spaghetti bolognese and plenty of incredible fresh parmesan.

During vintage, we will be tasting our wines from the blocks that come in through the winery on each day, but - as we haven't started yet - today Clive chose to show a wine from one of our neighbours. Fromm winery are also organic and are part of the MANA group with us; their Syrah is one of their best known wines and a fantastically warming and spicy accompaniment to the bolognese.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Vintage vittles... The Seresin way

Vintage is almost upon us, and our vintage workers are here and straining at the slips like the vinous greyhounds that they are. As is usually the case, we are one of the last properties to get started, enjoying the calm before the storm as our grapes finish the last stages of their maturation. After an exceptionally warm and sunny summer, the past week or two have been a little cooler, with a little bit of welcome and refreshing rain, and this has just taken the pace of the ripening a little - a good thing in our eyes.

Despite the fact that we have yet to fully embrace vintage, our team have been busy preparing the winery for action and therefore we have just begun to serve our vintage meals. We are very fortunate to have Marcia as our vintage chef; she is part of the Seresin family, an excellent cook and an inveterate feeder. Today was the first day of her "vintage" with us...

This morning, we all came together to share a spot of "smoko", in true Seresin style, served on the conveyor belt at the winery door. Fresh waffles made with Seresin fresh eggs always go down a treat...

Lunch for the winery crew today consisted of some of Marcia's delicious homemade pizzas - slow fermented pizza dough and the freshest of ingredients. Those of us in the office have good cause to be jealous when the photos get sent through! 

We thought we would share some of our meals, wines and vintage conversations with you over the coming weeks - show a little bit of what makes us tick, show who the people are who make everything happen and, more than anything show you, the Seresin way of life.