Picking by Moonlight – An Exercise in Humility


An angular standoff between moonlight and floodlight


The world looks entirely different when travelling Vineyard Drive by moonlight.  Blue lit trees stretch their weird limbs in arches above the roadway while night creatures go casually about their daily business.


Lucas kicking off the pick


Halter Ranch is all blue hue and shadow punctuated by the harvest lighting arrays and the near full moon.  There is excitement in the air as we embark on the evening’s harvest activities and a certain spell is cast in the knowledge that most of the world is asleep while our seasoned harvest crew kickstarts the harvest ritual. (more…)

The Halter Ranch Flock Gleefully Consuming Fresh Squash

Ancestor Dinner 2012 – Celebrating the Flagship


Follow the tealights…toward Ancestor


Each year in October, once the Vin de Paille has been laid out in the old Smith barn, we hold a dinner celebrating the season and the offical release of Ancestor.  Our flagship blend is comprised of the winemaking team’s favorite lots (individual portions of the final blend, fermented separately) from the vintage in which it is produced.  We have produced an Ancestor each year since its first incarnation in 2003.  2008 is the current vintage and it is comprised of 25% Petit Verdot, 24% Cabernet Sauvignon, 24% Syrah, 15% Merlot, and 12% Malbec.  Chef Jeff Scott captained this year’s dinner, consisting of a four course meal paired with Halter Ranch wines, peaking with the 2008 Ancestor.  What follows is a photo journal of the event. We’d suggest pairing the experience of viewing this post with a glass of 2010 Cotes de Paso Rouge, but that’s just us.  It might be equally appropriate to pull the cork on an Ancestor from your cellar for conceptual symmetry. (more…)

Up Late with Lindsey B – On a Packing Bender

Toward the end of Lindsey’s packing bender.


What follows was written in a state of delirium Monday morning after a long night.  Read further with caution.

In the words of the effusive miss Sarah F:

“It’s four AM somewhere…   It’s four AM here and I’m still working.”

For the record, I Lindsey B, began work on Sunday October 7 at 9:30 am, it is now Monday October 8 at 4:07 am.  Can you guess what I’m doing?

…I’ll spare you further suspense and state that yes club members, I am finalizing (packing and labeling) your fall shipment for pick up at 8 am today and delivery Tuesday or Wednesday.  The time between now and the arrival of the feeder (big empty) truck will be spent wrapping and arranging 20 pallets holding 1019 club shipments to be forklifted and hauled off toward a diversity of destinations.

Why am I doing this at 4 am you (and maybe I) ask?

There are 2 primary reasons and 2 sub-reasons (for a total of 4 reasons net).

1) I love Halter Ranch Vineyard and the wines it produces

Subreason A:  I want to protect said wines from heat spoilage or damage during transit

Subreason B:  UPS prefers morning pick up for large shipments and that helps fulfill ‘A’ while keeping them happy

2) I love people and want them to appreciate the wines we produce

Final Answer?  I do this out of love

Club members, your wines will reach you gently packed and intact as the result of my efforts (to be fair, though it diminishes the dramatic pose I was beginning to strike, your wines will reach you intact as result of my efforts and those of one Tony Quealy with the help of T Flores, and a few young rockstars from United Staffing Associates).  For those of you who are not yet members: Join up!  I want to pack your wine…at 4 am…out of love.  Seriously.


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