Here's a sorting table during a vintage I worked a few years ago. Somehow the tension in the air during crushing does not come through in this video I shot. Will the must hopper overflow? Am I forgetting to make an enzyme addition? Is there too much botrytis on the berries?
No, none of these things are happening, except in my head. And yet I am crouching under the grape conveyor with my little camera.
I've done the hardest part of my job--I was out on the crushpad at sunrise, fortified with Marmite and espresso, my hangover from last night's Chenin Blanc present but irrelevant. I set up the sorting tables, the conveyors, the crusher, got the tank ready, and made sure we got the right amounts of the right grapes.
Then I walked down the line, flicking the switches on, before waving my hand in my best Morpheus-impression "c'mere" to tell the kid to start dumping the Grenache boxes on the first vibrating table.
And I trust him and all the sorters, the way I hope my boss trusts me. I'm still keeping my eyes--and the third eye of my lens--on everything, but this is a system whose fitness I believe in by now. I've been overseeing this crew for weeks, and everything is going great. There is nothing to worry about.
Watching this now is very calming to me. The berries keep falling at the same intervals, a few get yanked out, the rest become wine. It's all part of somebody's well-conceived plan that, to nobody's surprise, worked.