Renee Reignier


Renee Reignier

This is a way to connect with friends and family while I am on a month long adventure in South America.

South America » Uruguay » North » Artigas February 7th 2012

This morning I woke up to find it unusally dark out. I thought it was still around 3am but the clock said 5 an dI had to get ready for work. After the scoulding hot shower with my frog friends I stepped outside to find this dramatic sky. A ribbon of bright orange lay low to the ground while huge cloulds pillared to the heavens glowing purple, pink and blue. All I could do is stop and stare, it seemed as if the lighting set the sky on fire, with one crack of thunder the rain came. the rain was so hard we all decided it was best to go back to sleep and wait for it to ease. By 9 am the rain didnt cease and Jiale came to summon us to work. With little ... read more

South America » Uruguay February 5th 2012

2-5-12 Sunday This morning was very easy, we met Jiar at 9 and started the pump overs, before we knew it we were done and it was only 10 am. I returned to my bed and fell back to sleep, not really because I wanted to but there isn’t any other really comfortable place to sit. I woke in time for lunch, and after a quick grilled cheese with quince, needed to cool off in the pool because it is again way to humid. The forecast calls for rain which you can feel the heaviness in the air. By six Tomas and I went to get the horses but the clouds were rolling in, I thought that it would be fun to still go out riding, and I some how convinced everyone to come along with ... read more

South America » Uruguay February 2nd 2012

2-2-12 Thursday The morning started before we did. Although Francisco said 8 am, the trucks were already unloading the grapes into the de-steamer. It was a quick drop off and we were ready to rack the pinot noir into its new tank and finish the testing. After pumping the wine from the tank we had to physically get into the tank and shovel out the skins to the press. It seemed like fun so I gladly volunteered. Into the tank I went along with Thomas to show me how it was done. To my surprise the bottom of the tank was at an angle so as soon as the majority of the grapes were gone you had to hold on to the top of the tank and hold yourself up so you didn’t slip down the ... read more

South America » Uruguay February 1st 2012

2-1-12 Wednesday The forecast says there will be over a 50%chance of rain for the next 4 days. With this news there was a change in plans for what will be harvested. Finding breakfast for four people was rough this morning, we are quickly running out of food. Thankfully Francisco has returned to the vineyard today. He acted very surprised when he asked me if we needed anything from the store and I replied with everything. Four mouths is a lot to feed and Thomas comes over for dinner as well. And he is 15, which means he normally eats like he is eating for two. He said he would get us what we needed for now and we could go shopping later. But really who knows how long “for now” really is. There are so ... read more

South America » Uruguay January 31st 2012

1-31-12 Tuesday The last day of January, it was a quite day at that. The rain started to settle in today so we finished fairly early. The last pump over was done on the pinot noir, which means that soon it will be moved to barrels. That will be exciting to see. The vineyard is known for the use of gravity to move wine so it will be very interesting to watch the process. Today was another day that proved that this is probably the first time they had four people here at once to work. I am not quite sure of my role here yet. Ben and Max both work on vineyards and know a lot about the day-to-day goings ons at a winery. Ori is here for the chemistry aspect and has a really ... read more

South America » Uruguay January 29th 2012

1-29-12 Sunday After a quick morning in the winery we were off the rest of the day to relax. Since today is the 29th we were told of this tradition that they only celebrate here in Uruguay. Every 29th of the month you have to eat gnocchi’s because it is good luck. The story goes that in Italy a saint was traveling through the countryside when he stopped at a house to ask for food and shelter. The couple that owned the house was very poor but prepare him gnocchi and let him stay the night. In return the saint gave the couple money and went on his way. Thus starting the tradition on eating gnocchi’s on this day every month. But again this tradition is only here, not in Italy where is supposedly originated. So ... read more

South America » Uruguay January 28th 2012

1-28-12 Saturday Today we have five wines to test! After another clarification of the Chardonnay we took a ride to the Brazilian vineyard to test all of the Merlots. Danny drove us around from lot to lot as we sampled three different types of Merlot, the Nunez, Linea, and L. There are so many different kinds of birds here in Uruguay, on the way to a different lot there were these two birds the size of turkeys that they explained to be prehistoric, they definitely looked the part, which led to a fun game that we play with Danny. He says the name of the bird in Spanish and we try to guess what it is in English, and some how everything we guess has the answer “no”. For this one particular bird we guessed turkey, ... read more

South America » Uruguay January 27th 2012

1-27-12 Friday Today we finished crushing the Sauvingon Blanc Nunez and also we added the Verdejo in the mix, which guess what… we had to harvest ourselves. I have come to hate harvesting at the end of the day, although it is only my second day harvesting, I know enough that in the midday sun there is no shade to take cover behind the vines and it is so hot you burn almost immediately, even though it was 11 am it was close enough to noon that it was hot enough. Ben and I were the ones stuck to harvest, they said there wasn’t enough scissors and we still had ours from the day before… luck of the draw I guess. Since it was only us two in the row I played some Rebelution to make ... read more

South America » Uruguay January 26th 2012

1-26-12 Thursday Today the morning started like yesterday, testing all of the wines, now we have three to test, the pinot nior, e. muscot, and the chardonnay. After the testing we were told to set up the machinery for more grapes that were being harvested. Danny said that we wouldn’t harvest today, just to help with the sorting and pressing. It was a relief because today is another really hot day. Today was only 4 trucks of Sauvingon Blanc Frances, a total of 8.9 tons or 6,595 liters it was all pumped into one tank, and while we waited between truck loads we clarified the chardonnay, which is letting the sediment fall to the bottom of the tank and slowly siphoning out the clear liquid into another tank, this will be done for 3 days to ... read more

South America » Uruguay January 25th 2012

1-25-12 Wednesday Today will be our first day of harvest. There is a whole lot of Chardonnay that needs to be picked and crushed today. After setting up the winery for the sorting and pressing we were driven to the chardonnay lot. Orlando, the guy in charge of the men who harvest the grapes told us to go to the end of the lot and start there. We were all determined to pick quickly because they thought we couldn’t finish one row, which is why they placed us so far away. At first I started with a lot of gusto, picking as fast as I could and filling lug after lug. By the end of my row I could hear the workers catching up to us. Ben and I finished our rows and helped Ori with ... read more

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