The Vandals and the Vineyard!

The sheriff looked at the totaled tractor with a bit of bemusement. “Those boys must have gone on a wild ride!” he said with a good ole’ boy laugh. A quarter acre of vines lay broken on the ground, loaded with grapes that were destined to become wine in a few short weeks. Now they were victims of bored-kids-in-a-small-town syndrome. These were kids who had been participating in lessor forms of vandalism for a couple of years and leaving booze bottles and other garbage behind. This time, they found the keys under the seat of the brand new tractor and rode it around on the top of the hill before pointing it at the vineyards and jumping off. Fortunately, the tractor caught up in the trellis wires and flipping instead of going through a fence and into someone’s swimming pool, through a house or, worse, running over someone!

“Aren’t you going to look for fingerprints?” the vineyard manager asked. “Naw, no need for that.” said the sheriff in a knowing way. You see, there was evidence in a streak of orange paint left on the gate. We think the sheriff knew that one of the neighbors, whose family had lived in the area for generations, had a white and orange truck. The sheriff was going to let the parents dole out the punishment instead of the legal system. Good old fashioned small town justice at work.

Well, the grapes were not ripe enough for a red wine, so we picked what we could and made a rosé out of it. We called it our “Vandal Rosé” and the rest is history. The vineyard was christened “The Vandal Vineyard” and it has gone on to produce some of our finest single vineyard Pinot Noir, Cabernet Franc, Merlot and even Cabernet Sauvignon.

Rob Sinskey

*Polaroid of the Vandal Vineyard – long before camera phones were king.