Thursday, April 03, 2008

Wine Making At Brumfields

Last June, we had gone to some wineries in the Yarra Valley region. One of those wineries was Brumfield At The Oaks, run by husband and wife team David and Anda. We had a great time there and David and Anda explained so much about wine to us. When they mentioned that they had a wine making day, we put our names down. I didn't really expect to hear back from them, but true to their words, they sent an email about their wine making day. So we all signed up and went for a fun day.

We left nice and early. After a quick stop at Maccas for some breakfast, we arrived at Brumfields at about 10am. There were a few other people already there, but we were one of the early ones. We were each given a pair of snippers and instructions. Then it was off we went with our buckets and start cutting down grapes.

We took it fairly easily (we were working for free) and chatted away while I also snapped photos. The grapes we were picking were Cabernet Franc. David instructed us to try some and keep chewing to bring out the flavours in the skin. After chewing for a bit, it did have some nice flavours.

When we reached the end of the row, we stopped for a photo. From left is Kin, Jo, Phuong and myself.

There was also a horse in the next paddock. It was very tame and let us pat him. Horse breath does smell of grass. The horse did this massive blow of it's breath on mine and it didn't smell good.

In one of the vines, there was even a nest and some eggs. We cut around it and left it where it was. One egg had hatched but there were still four eggs unhatched.

After two hours of "hard work", it was time for a free lunch. There was some very delicious burger patties (meat and vegetarian) that Anda had made herself. She had also made some of her own relish and the ultra delicious garlic sauce. Salads and bread rounded out the BBQ. Oh, how could I forget the wine. David opened so many bottles of wine and we all drank up. I liked the Cabernet Sauvignon the most, although the Chardonnay was nice too.

After lunch, it was time to crush the grapes. Look how many buckets we all picked.

The grapes were thrown into the crushing and picking machine. The machine pulled the grapes from the stems and ejected out the stems. It also crushed them.

When we finished crushing all the grapes, it was back into the house for some more wine tasting and buying. We each bought a few bottles of wine to take home. We thanked David and Anda for a very fun day. If you're out in the Yarra Valley region, why not stop by Brumfields and try a few wines. David and Anda are very nice people and will help explain things to you if you don't know much about wine, like me.


  1. Looks like a great day out. I've always wanted to grape picking and winemakin but all I've ever managed are potatoes. Not quite the same really.

  2. Hi Ed, it was a fantastic day out. Grape picking is really hard back breaking work. But to see the whole wine making process was a real highlight.

    If you try really hard, I'm sure you can make some form of alcoholic drink out of potatoes. :-)

  3. Thanh, I'm sure I could make something out of potatoes but it would probably turn me blind.

  4. Hahaha, that's one thing the potatoes have in common with the grapes then. Drinking a lot of wine will also make you blind....boom boom. Lame joke :-)