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Mi Bins Es Su Bins

Brian Loring is bin-swapping this harvest.

Posted: Sep 9, 2008 12:28pm ET

By Brian Loring

Posted by Brian Loring

You can pick your friends, and you can pick your vineyards, though you can't pick your friends’ vineyards—but it turns out you CAN pick with your friends’ bins! And you can also borrow your friend’s intros.

When I was blogging during the 2006 harvest, I lamented about all the empty picking bins passing each other on Highway 101 in California. I wondered if my winemaking buddies and I could implement a bin-sharing program. I’m happy to report that, after a couple of years of planning and some trial runs, we’re doing it for real this year.

Given the price of diesel, trucking costs have skyrocketed. So sharing bins isn’t just good for the environment, it’s also good for our wallets. Cleaner air and heavier wallets makes us all happier. So here’s what we’ve got lined up so far:

• Adam Lee of Siduri (www.Siduri.com) and Andrew Vingiello of A. P. Vin (www.apvin.com) will each drop off extra bins for us when they deliver their bins to Keefer Ranch in Russian River.
• Justin Lattanzio of Lattanzio Wines (www.lattanziowines.com) will drop off some bins for us at Graham Family Vineyard in Russian River.
• We’ll drop off some of our bins at Solomon Hills Vineyard in Santa Maria for David O'Reilly of Owen Roe Winery (www.owenroe.com) in Oregon.

• When the Siduri bins make it to our place and are finished being processed, we’ll take them out to Clos Pepe and Cargasacchi vineyards in Sta. Rita Hills, and Stolpman Vineyard in Santa Ynez for Siduri picks.
• Andrew’s bins will end up at Clos Pepe and Rancho Ontiveros (Santa Maria) vineyards for his picks later this month.
• We’ll take bins out to White Hawk in the Los Alamos Hills for Justin’s pick there.
• After our bins make the long trip up to Oregon's Willamette Valley, David O'Reilly of Owen Roe will empty them and take them out to Shea Vineyard for us.

And I’m sure we’ll do even more next year! We’d done a trial run last year where Uncle Sid (Adam Lee) dropped bins at Keefer Ranch for us. When we sent them back with Clos Pepe and Cargasacchi fruit, we couldn’t resist the temptation to “mess” with Sid’s bins. I drew a quick caricature of Sid, came up with some funny sayings, and printed up a bunch of transparencies to stick all over his bins. ☺ Here are a few examples below.

Adam liked them so much he had T-shirts made with the images! You have to make time for some fun now and then.

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