Grapes To Bottle

Grapes To Bottle

At SipSend, we are not only a wine website, but also a bonded winery. This gives us the flexibility to ship around the country and provide custom wine label services. This also means we get to do our own harvest each year! 

We are now releasing our 2021 Enviar Rosé, a labor of love, hand-crafted in San Francisco with organic grapes from Butte County. 

On the evening of August 27th, I picked up a large rental truck, then swung by the winery to grab six half-ton picking bins. From there, it was off to Chico, where I was able to check into a motel for a few hours of rest before the big day. 

Waking at dawn, I headed to the beautiful Nascere Vineyard, just outside of town. The family was prepped to start picking and we loaded the first bin onto the back of a small tractor. Harvesting is back-breaking work, but the two kiddos had the advantage of being close to the height of the grape clusters, thus able to harvest much faster than myself. Battling ferocious mosquitos, all six bins were filled with beautiful Barbera grapes within a couple of hours. 

With the truck loaded up it was back to San Francisco where the grapes rested overnight. The next day, they went into the press. By going straight into the press, without allowing the skins to soak in the juice for any time at all, we achieved a nice pale color in the finished wine. After pressing, the juice was transferred to a couple of stainless steel tanks. No commercial yeast was added, we instead relied on ambient yeasts of the vineyard and winery as our goal was to manipulate the wine as little as possible. 

After a fermentation lasting about two weeks, the wine was completely dry. It tasted great right away, with plenty of zippy, refreshing acidity. Half of the wine remained in a stainless steel tank while the other half went into neutral barrels. These barrels had been used several times before. They don’t impart any flavor to the wine, but do allow the wine to breathe. To maintain stability and freshness, a minimal amount of sulphur was added. We also “topped up” the barrels periodically, replacing the wine that naturally evaporates. By keeping the barrels full, we minimize the effect of oxygen on the wine. With rosé, freshness is the key! 

March 10th was bottling day. The winery where we operate has several other tenants who would also be bottling some wine. Like most wineries, ours does not have its own bottling line so a mobile bottling truck is called in. A helpful team of wine enthusiasts was there to help feed empty bottles into the line and pack up the full bottles as they came out. 

Our Enviar Rosé is now ready to be enjoyed. We’ve made it easy to grab a bottle for yourself for just $22 plus $5 shipping, or send to dozens of your favorite customers and teammates in minutes! Rosé season is why we think spring is the best season.