A Morning at the Vineyard & Stormy Weather Cocktail

       OK so today has to be one of my tops since moving to the Cape as I got the opportunity to Truro Vineyards and help harvest the Chardonnay grapes that will go into making their 2012 EstateChardonnay Wine and some Chardonnay blends they make. The day started out questionably, with gray cloudy skies, and a light mist in the air. I was wondering do they harvest if it rains? But as I left the house any rain that had been falling stopped and just that gloomy overcast seemed to linger. As I got to the winery it had brightened up only a little but at least there was no sign of rain. Dave got me a pair of gloves and some nippers or garden clippers and gave me a few instructions, then pointed to a yellow bucket on the ground and said, go to it. Now let's put some of this into perspective, I have a near phobia of things that fly and sting, Chardonnay grapes tend to be rather sweet, bees, especially yellow jackets like sweet things. See a possible problem here. However the air was a little cooler, and with the clouds about it did not heat up and by golly the bees stayed very quiet. I can not believe in the 3 hours that we were there harvesting I did not get stung, not even once. No that to me is a good day. 

      There were 14 of us volunteers, some year rounders, some seasonal folks and at least one visitor. It was a wonderful time of conversation and getting to know new people that our paths would not have normally crossed. Yet gathered together today we were able to get the job done in just 3 hours. There was a retired gentleman, a visitor from Texas, a gal that was seasonal from Wellfleet, and another that was a year rounder. There were at least 3 others that were year rounders from the Cape and 1 that I know that was still in between making the Cape their home and a place off the Cape. Some had done this before and several of us where doing this for the first time. We all came together looking for a little fun, adventure and to say we helped out with part of the harvest. 

      The vineyard folks were gracious enough to provide a nice mid-morning snack and then lunch after it was all done. Dave took the time to explain the process of extracting the juices from the grapes and the fermentation process than the aging in Oak barrels. And finally giving us an approximate date, early 2014 that the wine would be ready for the shelf in the retail shop. 
      So with all the bees and a few other kinds a critters about would I do this again, in a heart beat. It was a first for me, and one that I had fun doing. I met good people, had great conversation and had just a blast doing it. I think part of it is that it is so different than what I do every day that it is a nice break in my day after day routine. 
      Now I do not have to do this, I don't get paid for this, and I am not getting any promotional thing out of this. But I have to say if you have never been part of a wine club, starting out with a small vineyard wine club is one of the best ways to get started. I am part of the Truro Wine Club and get to try all different kinds of wines that they produce several times during the year. They have a Three Bottle Club as well as a Sox Bottle Club. I did check with the powers to be at the winery and they do have some opening in the club, so if this is of any interest, sign onto www.trurovineyardsofcapecod.com and check out the club, if they ask how you heard about it, tell them Cape Cod Rockhopper sent you. 
      Not everyone can say they have participated in a vineyard harvest of grapes, but as of today, I can add that to my list. I really had fun today and look forward to the next opportunity to join them in another harvest. 
      I have checked the level of the oil in the lighthouse lamp and it is full, the lens is spotless clean and the beacon is shinning brightly for anyone who needs a guiding light to help lead the way home, to old Cape Cod. 
      Well after all this you would think I would have some kind of recipe using Truro Wine, but I make up my lists and menus by the first of the year and this day was not foreseen at that time. So I am going to stick with my schedule and with the theme of a weather related cocktail. As a lot of cocktails there are a couple different recipes with the same name. Some are just a variation of what I will share and one or two are not even close. So take your pick, but it seems that the recipe below more websites and also my books call for the recipe below than any other. Well all I can say is I hope you don't find your head with a lot of storms between the ears after drinking to any of these. Remember to please drink responsibly. Now on with the show,,
      This week's recipe: Stormy Weather Cocktail
  •       2      oz      Rum, dark
  •     10      oz      Ginger Beer
  •       1      dash   Lime juice
      Combine rum and ginger beer in a beer mug, mix and add dash of lime juice at the end. 

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