Raise a Glass to Our First Grape Crop

Black Grapes (Watercolour)

Black Grapes (Watercolour)

One of the reasons we were attracted to buy our house three years ago was the lovely old grapevine growing in the back garden – it looked a hundred years old draped across the dead stump of an olive tree. We were very excited to see what we could make of it, but despite lots of hard work we’ve struggled to get more than a few bunches of sad looking grapes over the past couple of years… I suspect the birds were helping themselves while we weren’t looking!

This year I was quick with the nets and we’ve managed to cultivate a crop of grapes that was actually worth saving, and today we decided they were ripe enough and set to picking them before they all fell off. We gathered an impressive 18kg which we promptly squashed and began the process of wine making! Of course we had to try using our feet first (after a thorough wash & sanitising), and it’s every bit as much fun as you’d imagine :-). Then it got too difficult and we resorted to hands to finish the crushing.

Barrel of Grapes

Barrel of Grapes

So, feeling tired and a little sunburnt, I have a small painting of black grapes for you today… While I was painting I wasn’t very happy… too much assuming I knew what to paint and not enough actually looking at the subject. As a result they’re quite heavy and overworked, however, they do look like the bunch I was painting – a lovely soft bloom across them rather then bright highlights.