It is always exciting when new wine arrives.
Given the delay factor between when I order from Italy and when the physical wine arrives, it is easy for me to forget that there is some exciting new stuff coming in.
For instance, I paid for some wine on May 3 that only arrived in Sydney on June 21.
My research tells me that a fully laden container ship travels at the hurtling speed of 10 knots per hour. The distance from departure point, Genoa, to Melbourne is 11,000 kilometres, so it takes the ship 46 days to get here. Quite amazing, huh.
And then just a short 900 kilometre doddle up the road to Sydney.
So when the shipper advised that the next shipment of wine from Il Palagio was due to arrive at my storage this week I was pretty excited.
I was still finishing my morning coffee when a call came through from a truckie to tell me that he was at the storage depot. I thought it odd, given that my instructions were to give me a call one hour before arrival so that I could meet the delivery, but not unusual.
When I arrived and looked at the delivery something seemed wrong.
First, there was only one pallet and second, the box colours were all wrong. Had they sent me the wrong stuff?!
Closer inspection showed that this was a delivery from my business partner, Dan, with our own Ben Murray Grenache and Riesling....how could I forget! I quickly broke this down and put it safely into storage...noting mentally that I now had to label fifty cases of wine...yikes!
I returned home and had hardly put the keys on the hallway bureau when another call came through - the storage manager.
"You better come and have a look at this," was all he could say.
Off I go again, wondering what was awaiting me...and again curious as to why another delivery had arrived without any notice.
I walk up to the sheepish truck driver and he reveals the state of play on the truck bed. He has over tightened the stays and in the short trip from the Sydney depot the two pallets had come asunder and wine boxes were everywhere.
"They didn't shrink wrap it properly," was his defence.
I calmly (well, somewhat) explained to him that this wine had survived two truck trips in Italy, a 46-day voyage on a container ship, and a road trip from Melbourne to Sydney. Given that, its current state looked like a clear cut case of driver error.
He conceded...and willingly helped me unload the mess from the truck. This was a pain as usually I take the entire pallet into my storage area and unload, handling each case once. On this occasion the pallets were broken up and everything had to be double handled.
I have worked out that handling wine is good exercise, so long as you manage your back properly. A full bottle of wine weighs 1.3kg, so a full pallet of 50 cases weighs 780kg.
Given I had to double handle two pallets, collectively I had hauled around nearly four tonnes yesterday. My car weighs about 1200kg, so in the process of putting the wine in to storage I had been slinging around about 3.25 VW Golf's.
Not much for a ripped young brickie maybe, but for a fifty(ish) pen pusher it felt like a reasonable effort.
Bottom line of all this manliness is of course that there are some new vintages of some magic wines available now:
Il Palagio Ignobile, Chianti Classico, Torgentile and Le Bambole from Tuscany...and from Ben Murray Wines in the Barossa, a beautiful Grenache and a very smart Eden Valley Riesling.
Click here and here to order some of these great new wines.