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Wine Tour

Joe, Carlos, Francisco (the driver), Joe, Mary, Arleen and myself went on a mystery trip organized by Carlos.  We went to Albernoa today.  We saw orange trees, olive trees and grape vines.  The orange trees were loaded with oranges.  Arleen could hardly contain herself.
We arrived at the Cascado Santa Vitoria Winery in time for a tour.  Took lots of pictures of the storks at the winery.  They do not migrate anymore, but stay in the same location.  The making of wine is very interesting and complicated.  Eighty percent of the grapes are picked by hand, some by machine.  They still stomp some of the grapes with their feet.  We saw a video of them doing this.  They are measured by their acidity, color, alcohol level and bouquet.  The temperature and humidity must be balanced.  The oak barrels are used for 4 years and then sold.  They are purchased from France and cost $500 – $600.  The wine is aged 9-14 months.  They have 118 acres in grapes and 100 acres in olives.  They use only their own grown grapes in winemaking.  We visited the wine cellar and shown a video about winemaking.  We then had a wine tasting period.  Afterwards, we toured the premises.
We left for a delicious lunch of beef stew (except for Arleen who had eggs).  Lunch was at Dom Raphals.  On our way back to the hotel we stopped at a Roman excavation site.  It was very interesting and had beautiful tiles.  Instead of paying the driver for his time and van, we made a contribution to the local blood bank.
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