Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Fall in the Vineyard

Today was a beautiful California Fall day! The vineyard is beautiful this time of year and it is relaxing to know that the harvest is over.

The building in this picture is the recently remodeled barn, now known as the winery! We have started to fill it up with equipment to prepare for next year's harvest. This year we weren't quite ready in time so Phil and our winemaker made this year's wine down at a facility in Campbell. We are making some port for personal use here at the winery.

The other night as I was helping Phil rack the port I was hit with an idea. Can you use the lees (what is left in the bottom after the fermentation stops) to make bread? I decided to give it a try. Using some of the lees, a little bit of yoghurt and some flour I made a sourdough starter two days ago. Today I used some of the starter, more of the lees , water, salt, more flour and baked the dough into 24 dinner rolls. They look and smell good, but we will have to wait until tonight to find out if they taste good as well.

This morning while the rolls were rising, I finished plying my latest hand spun yarn. I ended up with 270 yards, 113 grams/40z, of the loveliest softest yarn ever. It has a little bit of sheen to it, probably from the 30% bamboo. The color reminds me of a pair of well worn pair of jeans - nice! The fibers for this yarn came from Frog Tree Yarns (Meriboo - 70% Merino & 30% Bamboo) and I purchased it at Purlescene. This is the thinnest yarn I have been able to spin so far, I am excited! The first single gave me a little bit of trouble - it kept breaking- but I did much better on the second one. I guess I just had to get used to it.