Sourcing grapes In larger than hobby amount, but less than pro amount

Discussion in 'Wine Making from Grapes' started by Adam Beck, Jan 27, 2020.

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  1. Jan 27, 2020 #1

    Adam Beck

    Adam Beck

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    So I’m hoping to step things up a notch this year and get moving on a larger batch of wine. I’d like to get 1/2 ton, (or 1 ton if that’s not even possible) of good quality fresh grapes, but I’m not sure how to go about it. I live near wine country in California, I tried cold emailing a couple vineyards but got no response.

    Has anyone had success with this scale? Seems like I can get smaller amounts easily from suppliers online, or there’s like winebusiness.com if I wanted to get like 5 tons or more, but I don’t know what there is for the in between.

    thanks!
     
  2. Jan 27, 2020 #2

    franc1969

    franc1969

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    Depending on where you are located- here's one option. If you are looking for the 1/2 ton or 1 ton quantities, you can arrange picking times with him- or take what you can get during his other times. This is definitely pick-your-own, though.
    https://www.calwinebroker.com/
    I am nowhere close enough to do this, wish i could find something nearby.
     
  3. Jan 27, 2020 #3

    Johnd

    Johnd

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    Try calling F. Colavita & Son. Here’s their website, you should have little trouble getting grapes in California.....

    https://www.cawinegrapes.com/
     
  4. Jan 27, 2020 #4

    Adam Beck

    Adam Beck

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    I actually used Cal Wine Broker last year for 100lbs of Cab Franc. I would use him again some time, just because there aren’t a lot of other options, but to be honest I had a couple issues. #1 is that he had a handful of varieties listed on his site as being “pesticide free”. I to do chose Cab Franc because it was one of those. When I got there and asked about it he said no they were not pesticide free at all. #2 is that the grapes weren’t that great. Maybe other varieties are better, every pick is a different vineyard, so it’s hard to know what level of quality the rest would have been.

    All in all it wasn’t terrible but I’d just prefer to go a different route if possible. His prices are good, but if I’m gonna just do 100 lbs again I’d go with Oak Barrel Winecraft instead, as I’ve heard great things about their grape quality.
     
  5. Jan 27, 2020 #5

    Adam Beck

    Adam Beck

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    Yeah it’s less that it’s trouble and more that I just have no idea how you’re supposed to go about it all. Thanks, I’ll check out a wine grapes.com!
     
  6. Jan 27, 2020 #6

    CDrew

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    I have gotten grapes twice from Michael (calwinebroker.) It is a bit of an adventure and you're never know who will show up, or what the grapes will exactly be like. But He does have some excellent contacts and at least the Petite Sirah I got through him was good at the pick and is rounding into a drinkable wine now. It really helps to have help when you pick with Michael so you can get it done quickly and help loading up is good. It struck me that he likes to have the day over by 10am.

    Also, join you local homewinemaking club. They have contacts and group buys all fall.
     
    Chuck E likes this.
  7. Jan 30, 2020 #7

    Americanhooch

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    I bought from Oak Barrel Winecraft this year and so far, so good. Looks like they list pricing for quantities up to 900lbs on their site, so might be worth a try to see if they'll throw in an extra 100lbs to make it a clean 1/2 ton ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
     
  8. Jan 31, 2020 #8

    Chris Johnson

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  9. Jan 31, 2020 #9

    NorCal

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    It is a challenge. It’s all about relationships.
    If you have a macro bin and willing to come up to Loomis, I could hook you up with a half ton of Cab Franc. I manage the harvest for a 20 acre vineyard up here.
     

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