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Vint Hill Craft Winery

Even though Vint Hill Craft Winery is not currently open to the public, we had the opportunity to visit Vint Hill and meet with Chris Pearmund from Pearmund Cellars. After visiting the site, we are even more excited about Vint Hill Craft Winery. This winery is filling a need for wine enthusiasts who want to learn more about wine and winemaking.

Chris gave us a tour of the building that is under renovation to becoming the first winery in the D.C. area to offer people the opportunity to participate in making their own barrel of wine.

Chris believes that with extra steps taken during winemaking, the quality of wine that participants will be producing will be high. For example, when the grapes arrive at the winery they will go to a sorting table to remove the MOG (Matter Other than Grapes). The next step will be the grapes going through the destemmer. Chris is adding another step to the process by having a second sorting table available. After the grapes leave the destemmer, they will go on to the second sorting table. It is here that the jacks – small green pieces that attach grapes to the bunch – will be removed. According to Chris if the jacks are not removed, they will leave harsh flavors in the finished wine.

While workers were busy with hammers and saws, Chris gave us a brief history of the building and enthusiastically pointed out the different areas where the equipment will be located on the first floor. The tasting room will be located on the second floor and visitors will be able to see the work taking place below. The tasting room will also serve as a classroom for participants who will learn what they are to do before actually working on each step of creating their wine.

Vint Hill Craft Winery is scheduled to open July 2009. If you are interested in producing a barrel of your own wine, you can find more detailed information on the Vint Hill Craft Winery website. Participants can sign up now.

Cheers, Kathy

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