Bottling is a process that we do year round here at the winery. There is always wine in the tanks that is in different stages of readiness and bottling any wine that is ready is a priority. The problem with bottling is that it’s time-intensive and it takes a large number of people to do it efficiently. For the last several years we have been lucky enough to have lots of friends who are willing to come out in the early morning hours and help us get our products on the shelf, but it is not always easy for us to round up enough people to get a good bottling going. Plus, it can take hours to do a palette of wine.
That’s why when the Hamm’s of Keg Springs came up with an automated bottling truck we were excited. Gerald, Brian and Becky Hamm designed a little mini factory to fit into the back of a truck the size of a moving van so that the wineries in the area could take advantage of a streamlined, efficient system and save everyone a little time and frustration.
This unassuming truck houses a bottle sanitizer, bottle filler, labeler and heat shrinker for the capsules that go over the neck. Not to mention the moving track that feeds the bottles down a line to someone packing cases and taping them up.
Of course there are always a few kinks to work out in the beginning, but once this puppy gets rolling, the time it takes to bottle up a couple of tanks full of wine is drastically reduced. Leaving us free to do other things, like make more wine.
The whole process is pretty fun to watch and we are excited to have it available to us.