Friday, September 17, 2010

Interns or Indentured Servants?

There’s nothing better than two fresh-faced and enthusiastic young folks coming into the winery for harvest, eager to learn about grape growing and winemaking. They’re a shot in the arm for the whole winery, adding great energy and good spirits, but the best part is they will do all kinds of monotonous and arduous jobs that come along. Everything we ask them to do - from bottling to grape sampling and scrubbing tanks - it’s all a learning opportunity for them, full of the joy of new experience. For me, it’s getting loads of tedious work done. (For our cellar crew, I suspect it’s more like hazing freshmen).

For this harvest, our two interns are Katie Rabago, a student in the winemaking program at Cal Poly SLO, and Alan Daly, a biochemist from Ireland. It is a great learning experience for them both, but we do work the heck out of them. The basic deal is: we give them invaluable experience, and in return, we work them like indentured servants, working ten to twelve hours a day, six and seven days a week when we get to the middle of harvest.

Since harvest is a bit tardy this year, we’re getting all our bottling done right now. And as you might guess, we’ve got them building boxes, working the line, and sneaking in lab analysis during the off moments. The crazy thing is, they’re still smiling! Yep, it’s the best of worlds for the winery; they work their butts off, and then say thanks for letting them do it. God, I love interns!

Stay tuned for the further adventures of Katie and Alan to see what wonderful grunt work we find for them next, all in the name of education. I believe shovels and rubber boots are definitely in their future.

Jac Cole, Spring Mountain Vineyard

1 comment:

Cuvaison Estate Wines said...

nice insight into the world of interns.