I’ve blogged a lot about wine and visiting wineries. But until this weekend, I’d never had much insight into how wine is actually made. The Summerset Winery Fall Harvest has been on my Iowa bucket list for awhile now and this past Saturday a friend and I finally headed south toward Indianola to try our hand at grape picking (and stomping).
After a quick breakfast and a rundown of the rules from Ron, Summerset’s owner, we headed out into the vineyard armed with our galloon buckets and pruning sheers to snip off bunches of grapes. We were a little worried at first, but grape harvesting was surprisingly quick and easy.
When all the grapes had been picked, various bottles of Summerset’s wines came out. We sipped a few glasses (so what if it was before 11 a.m.) before heading back up to the winery. And so began the really fun part. After stamping our feet on the back of our Fall Harvest T-shirts, we climbed into the stomping tank for some squishy fun. I have to admit that squishing grapes with my toes is one of the weirder things I’ve ever experienced, but it was a lot of fun (and neither of us had this unfortunate experience).
If you’re interested in attending next year, the Fall Harvest is actually a pretty great deal. For $25 a person, you get breakfast, lunch, the chance to help harvest some of Summerset’s grapes, a lot of wine, a T-shirt with your “grape-stained” (read: painted) purple feet stamped on the back and, of course, a chance to stomp some grapes too.
Summerset Winery, 151010 Fairfax Street in Indianola, Iowa