Ten-to-Go Wine Release Party

Just over a week ago, my generous cousins brought us to New York to help them celebrate at their wine release party. My cousin Bill and his friends Ed and Fred started a winery almost ten years ago, called Ten-to-Go, and they’ve become quite gifted winemakers.
The Ten-to-Go winemakers: Bill, Fred, and Ed
We already knew something of their talent from a gift Bill and Jane gave us at our wedding: a case of wine! They made the wine and they had labels made especially for us, which they designed from one of our engagement pictures on Facebook and our wedding invitation. We sampled one bottle, but the other eleven will age a year. Fantastic!
Wine wedding gift from the Austins
The winery is housed in the old tractor barn belonging to Ed and his wife, Betsy, on their gorgeous property. The grapes are ordered from Chile, and when they arrive, it’s time to work. First they use this equipment to remove the stems and crush the grapes.
Grape-pressing equipment
After a long period of fermentation and all sorts of other tricks of the trade, it’s time to bottle the wine. First you sterilize the bottles, as I’m doing here.
Sterilizing the bottles
Then the wine is bottled. Then the bottles are corked, as Fred and my cousin Kyra are doing here.
Fred and Kyra corking the bottles
Honestly, I came late and didn’t pay all that much attention to the work, so I can’t accurately report the process, but that’s a rough sketch. Now, what interested me more–the beautiful farm, the fun people, the amazing food and wine, and the party! The farmhouse was built in the 1800s and was gorgeous. Between that house and the barn was another home they rent out, pictured here, amid many flowers.
One of the houses on Ed and Betsy's property
I couldn’t believe how much was blooming in October in New York. Such a beautiful place. Laurie and I enjoyed walking around the fields, and she collected a lovely bouquet of wildflowers and colorful fall leaves.
Laurie and the flora she found on our walk
My cousins’ neighbor Joe is a teacher at the Culinary Institute of America nearby, and he barbecued a pig and kindly taught us some tricks along the way. Here the Professor, Joe, and Daddy take the pig off the barbecue for the last time and get him dressed for dinner. The pork was absolutely delicious.
The Professor, Joe, and Daddy get Wilbur dressed for dinner
My brother can’t miss a Georgia football game, so cable was run out to the barn. Here are my mom, Austin, and Laurie watching the Dawgs get stomped. But not like grapes.
Watching the Georgia football game
After the official party ended, my family still hung around the bar, and there was dancing to “Meatball” and “Thriller” and other random fun. Austin lost his appetite after the game but recovered some by this time–here he is behind the bar and some of the Ten-to-Go bottles.
Austin and some of the Ten-to-Go wines
You can see the Professor and I enjoyed ourselves. In fact, we had barrels of fun. Thanks, Austins! Cheers!
The Professor and me

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