Over the weekend, my family and I took a little trek to LaCrosse, Wisconsin – a three-hour journey from Stillwater, Minnesota. We have friends there who left their corporate careers early, and started a vineyard in the beautiful LaCrosse Valley-a perfect climate for grapes. The vineyard has grown over the past five years, with hundreds of new plants of several cultivars planted each year. They grow Marquette, LaCrescent, Edelweiss, and Frontenac gris grapes…to name a few. They are bottling their own wine now and work is almost complete on their new wine tasting room and banquet hall. We can’t wait for the grand opening in spring 2013!
Our trip was not for wine tasting or cheese eating, however. We went to work. Some of us worked picking grapes-we each picked nearly 500 pounds in one day. The rest of the group worked at the winery crushing grapes. It was a lovely day to work outside and the setting could not have been more beautiful. We left late in the evening, satisfied with a day of work well done and with a renewed appreciation for all those who work in agriculture. We all agreed that whatever we pay for a bottle of wine–it’s not enough!