Stop #8: Kimmel Orchard Tasting Room
& Wine Under the Pines Event
Last fall, Katherine and I went to Nebraska City to see her older sister, Wendy. While we were there, in the home of Arbor Day, I mentioned that I had always wanted to visit an apple orchard. Maybe I hadn't always wanted to visit one, but I really did that day since we had passed a couple on our way. Wendy obliged, and drove us out to Kimmel Orchard, where I stalked around the trees, pretending I was an apple thief.
... No apples were actually stolen.
Once we'd wandered around the orchard, we made our way inside and discovered the tasting room. Kimmel Orchard was my first official wine tasting, and more importantly, it was there that I first learned about the Nebraska Wine Tour. It was too late for us to get started last year, but I knew it was something I wanted to do this year.
We returned to Kimmel during their Wine Under the Pines event. We chose to start out inside with a regular tasting, and because Kimmel and Arbor Day Farm share many of the same wines, we were able to try ones that we hadn't been able to at Arbor Day Farm. The woman who was hosting the tasting was pleasant to talk to. It was her first day of pouring and she laughed as she told us that she had been to Kimmel a few times and was asked by a staff member if she would like to serve wine. She did a great job! Katherine and I joked that we need to start hanging around tasting rooms and vineyards more (is that possible?) in the hopes of getting the same opportunity.
When we had finished our regular tasting, we wandered outside to check out Wine Under the Pines. This year, proceeds from the event went to the American Red Cross to aide those affected by the 2011 Missouri River flooding. Six vineyards and breweries participated, so there was something suited to almost everyone's tastes. There were also different cooking demonstrations, a pairing class, vineyard tours, and live music all day.
The biggest hit was the grape stomp.
August 6th would have been Lucille Ball's 100th birthday. I couldn't think of a better way to celebrate than to kick off my sandals, let my red hair down, and stomp some grapes. Children and adults packed into a tank full of grapes and squished - everyone had a smile on their face and grape skin between their toes.
After. Stomping grapes is strangely cathartic...
Later, after I'd rinsed off my feet, I asked one of the men at the Kimmel tasting stand what they do with the stomped grapes. He said they get thrown into a ditch. I laughed, and asked if he promised.
"No," he replied, winking.
To be on the safe side, I think I'll avoid any wines with commemorative Lucy labels.
Kimmel Orchard's Website