I’m the cellar rat for my vintage work here. The jobs I’ve been getting stuck into are typical for a small/medium winery: cleaning and moving heavy stuff around. In particular I’ve been: racking juice and wine; inocluating and mixing in yeast nutrients; pushing down, splashing and pumping over reds; helping with the crushing and pressing (the latter rarely); receiving grapes; some lab analysis (basic stuff like pH and TA); monitoring ferments (density and temperature); and even a little labelling. I have also been out picking for a couple of mornings, mercifully before the full midday heat. And, of course, there’s been lots of cleaning and moving heavy stuff around. It’s been great experience.
The winery uses ‘3-ways’ on the hoses to minimse oxidation of the wines. This has taken a bit of getting used to but I’m not pretty much into the ‘tasting-on’ and ‘tasting-off’ routine (I will try to post some pictures and maybe diagrams of that in a few days). I have also been getting used to the hose-to-hose clamps which take a little juggling to start with but I’m nearly there now.
Work times have been varied, but usually 8am-4/5pm, though there have been some 6am starts and many night-time trips back to punch-down and pump-over the reds as late as midnight. I’m pretty tired but with everyone mucking in and a very understanding environment (thanks Mike!) it’s been fine.