Today is not the day I catch up on sleep. We were up and on the road before dawn in a tall rental van for a Sweetzer Cellars shopping spree.

As tempted as I was to head to the Midwest this weekend, the fact that I couldn’t get the Grand Canyon laundry done before I left for Alaska suggests that I was a little overscheduled.

Today is errand day on a massive scale:

First stop, The Vintner’s Vault!


Bottling supplies for the 2012 Pinots:



A stainless steel tank to ferment our 2013 Chardonnay:


Racks for our 30 gallon barrels:


Next, more racks from In Vino Veritas custom crush…

Then, south from Paso Robles to Santa Maria and Presqu’ile, the source of our 2012 Pinot grapes. We visited “our” rows of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay (three different clones of each). To us, balance is important, and each clone imparts a different quality.

Obligatory selfie with winery dog:


We also got a tour of the brand new winery and tasting room, which is… I’ll let the photos speak:




From Presqu’ile in Santa Maria (the northern tip of the Solvang Century) we headed south to Lafond in the Santa Rita Hills (really close to the scene of my Solvang Century flat) to see a man about some Pinot grapes.

After an Indiana Jones/Mr. Toad jeep ride through the vineyards, we had a barrel tasting of some of the clones we were unfamiliar with. We bought a couple of bottles for our custom crush people, but mentally committed to buying a couple tons of Pinot Noir grapes.

And speaking of balance… Harvest is going to back right up to Cycle Greater Yellowstone and may overlap with Bike to the Beach New England.

Just thinking about it? I need a drink!