Yesterday was one helluvan active day. Nope I didn’t get out on the bike, nor did I go for a walk or a run. Nope yesterday I was a volunteer worker at our winery, Dusted Valley.
Now, I know you are wondering how can THAT be tiring….
Folks, I will tell you, at least in busy tasting rooms, the people who work there work HARD! I used to think, “Wow, what an easy and fun job. Pour wine, chat a bit, sip wine, chart a bit.” Yeah that aint how it really is…
This was day one of the Fall release. What’s nice about DV is that you have 2 releases a year, Spring and Fall, and you are required to buy 6 bottles. Unlike other places though, you get to pick the six you like, not the six they want to sell.
The hard part is, they are ALL good…
At different times they have different choices. In the spring I look forward to Squirrel Tooth Alice (Named after an old west prostitute (the cowboy’s friend)) in the fall BFM! (Blow your F’n Mind (and they don’t say F’n)) Plus Sryahs, Cabs, Cab Francs and whatever else they make! DAMN its all good.
Editors note: Take a look again at the poster on top. The State of Alabama for years refused to allow our wine in there, as they swore the lady was exposing a nipple. We then coined the phrase “Too Tacky for Alabama but PERFECT for Washington!
During releases, the place gets mobbed. On these weekends, they call out volunteers like me! (Will work for wine) We bust our asses for 6 hours, and leave with 3 bottles of wine. Seems fair..
Yesterday, though, was tougher than normal. It was Day 1 of the release, and due to some issues, we were short-handed. When given the choice, I prefer to work here,
My job is to take the orders, fill the boxes and bring them to the customers. This is normally a full-time job….
Yesterday it was PART of my job.
Right after a I got there, a drunk girl bus showed up. OK, I know it not respectful, but bear with me a bit. These are buses full of ladies out for 1) A bachelorette party, 2) a birthday or 3) to get drunk without a good reason. They all try to out dress each other, are very loud, and go from place to pace doing tasting, getting drunker and louder all the time, but never buying a bottle.
This was a group of 20. I helped check them in, fill glasses, check IDs and herd them away from the door so others could get in. And THEN it got busy.
I ran clean glasses up front, dirties to the back, washed and dried them, then got back to the closet to pick orders. While I had a lull, I would help at the front bar, chatting (which I suck at) pouring and answering questions. Then, when a case would empty in the closet, I would open a new one and stock the “Picker Boxes” for easy ordering. No lie, I easily lifted and moved 75 cases yesterday.
Then, for some reason, MANY more people than normal needed the cases carried to their cars. Some were older, some not able to lift, and some I believe were a bit lazy. BUT, it got me out of a hot room and into fresh air, so no complaints. Just tuckered.
The 6 hours flew. I worked up a sweat and I had a blast! Since its only twice a year, I love working the winery. Its different exercise, fun people (for the most part) and we love the DV ladies, Jill, Michelle, Veronica and Colleen. They spoil us rotten when we go for a tasting ourselves, so it’s a way for us to give back. And it’s why I call it our winery.
At the end, when we kick out all the people, the volunteers get to taste. This time it was just 2, myself and a lady named Shawna, who was there for the first time. We were chatting, and I broke a cardinal man rule, I HAD to ask how old she was….
I know, BAD! But while we were talking, we got on the subject of college, and I said I was a Coug. So I asked where she went. She said she did her undergrad in CA, and got her PhD at UW in Seattle. The brain did a quick disconnect. I had her pegged as fresh out of college and 22 or 23. But she is a doctor? (A scientist at Seattle Genetics no less!) I looked at her, and said, “Forgive me, but YOU have a PhD? How OLD are you? No way you look old enough!” Well she giggled and told me I was way off but thanked me a lot for thinking 23!
She wants to volunteer more as she likes people, and wine, but in her job doesn’t get to chat or sip much! I gave Jill a great review of her work, that lady was moving as fast as I was! The other good news, is she told me to have MathMajor check out her company for potential internships of jobs when he graduates! You just never know who you will meet in a winery…
So I drug my tired ass home, bought a Subway on the way, and enjoyed some Cab Franc and ibuprofen with dinner. I EARNED my wine yesterday, and I feel like I got a decent work out as well! Most importantly, Jill told me that she felt better being short staffed with me volunteering as she knew I would do ANYTHING that was needed, do it fast and do it right.
OH, and my pain in the buttkid brother with his lovely wife came though as well! I told Shawna to charge him double, I wonder if she did!
So if you are ever in Woodinville or Walla Walla, I highly recommend Dusted Valley, Tell them Tony sent you!