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The 2016 Grape Harvest

This year, I managed to gather a team of 40, about twice as many pairs of hands as last year, to help me harvest my grapes.

My vineyard in the Messara Valley, close to the Festos archaeological site

The date was set for Sunday 4th September, so some of my family members could not make it to the 7am departure meeting, as it was conflicting with the church service, but they joined the team later and were especially helpful in the kitchen to prepare the lunch.

My brother Manolis guided the team to my vineyard, and there I had already organized pruning shears, crates and some pairs of gloves so everybody could get started immediately.

Friends and family helping me harvest the grapes early in the morning

Crates full of freshly harvested Syrah grapes

Carrying the full crates to my tractor so I can take them to my farm, where I will immediately press them

Because there were so many of us, it did not take long after the coffee break to finish off the job, so the grapes were harvested in a record time!

Coffee break!

Then we prepared the last tractor load and got ready to all go to my farm.

When we got to my farm at about half past ten, Giorgos and Adonis were busy preparing the barbecue. We enjoyed some beers, whilst our team of cooks finished to prepare the lunch.

We had some delicious pork chops as well as grilled chicken from my farm (free-range, of course!) and plenty of salad, which was seasoned, no need to say, with my SAFIkala olive oil!

Preparing and enjoying the lunch!

I pressed the grapes immediately.

In keeping with the tradition, the new wine will be tasted on the day of Agios Giorgos, the Saint Patron of Wine, November the 3rd.

Pressing the freshly-harvested grapes in my farm

A great many thanks to all my friends and family members for helping me again this year! There will surely be a special bottle of my 2016 Syrah for you next year!

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