From the latest edition of the Martinborough Star, our community newspaper, comes a great little story by Katherine about how she begged, borrowed and cajoled the necessaries to make up a special lot of wine for a fund-raising auction to pay for work at the St Andrew’s Church hall, which happens to be right beside our place. Here’s Kathy’s story:
My mission was to get everything I needed for the hand bottling of 100 litres of 2009 Pinot Noir. We had set the wine aside to auction for St Andrew’s Church to help towards the building of the new toilet, kitchen and entranceway for the hall.
First stop Martinborough Winemaking Services. Janice has got to be the most helpful person around, so a good place to start. “Janice, I need bottles, corks, everything. Bottles – I need about 200. Is there a small amount of punted burgundy sitting here waiting for a good cause?” I asked.
“Call Larry,” said Janice. “Give him a go.”
So I did. And Larry, with very few words, said “Help yourself!” Yay Larry!
She then sent me to Chris Buring. Polly and Elizabeth were not making wine at all but were very excited about the strawberries that were emerging from their very impressive garden.
“Well, Chris isn’t here,” said Polly, “but I am going to make an executive decision and let you have this bag of corks. Be it on my head.”
Not quite enough, but a good start.
On a bit of a roll, I went in search of more corks. “Jeff, good neighbour, any chance of some corks for a good cause?”
Fantastic, but still not enough…
I went to see Strat and he sent me to Shaun who said, “sorry love – can’t help you, but try Robert at Schubert – they are still doing the cork thing.”
Robert said, “well all our corks are branded, but just have a seat and I’ll see if AWI, the cork makers, will donate some to a good cause.” Two seconds later I had 100 more corks to be delivered early the next week.
“We need some magnums,” I thought, “they’d be a real hit.” Paul at Martinborough said, “How many do you want?”
“How about five – could you spare us five, Paul?” So off I scampered with those!
Heather, from Dry River, had innocently mentioned at one point that they had some unused half bottles sitting in storage. So I climbed the Dry River stairs to ask Neil if he could spare us some bottles. His demeanour changed considerably when he realised I wanted empty bottles!
“How many do you want?” he asked.
“How about 50?”
“That should be fine,: he said and off I happily ran.
Next we needed a ‘corker’ – a very clever and simple bit of engineering that very easily squeezes corks into all size bottles – the kids loved it! Simon from Winequip – who should actually be selling them – said, “Sure Kath, you can borrow it.”
Thanks Simon and good luck with your growing family!
So we had a lot of fun bottling the wine in Wim Julicher’s winery – again free of charge. And now we are ready to auction the wine off, at the very same hall I mentioned at the start of this article.
So if you want to carry on this spirit of goodwill that is such a wonderful part of our little town, pitch up to the St Andrew’s Hall at 6.30pm Saturday 18th December, and buy some beautiful hand-labelled Angel’s Share 2009 Pinot Noir.