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I’ve always been into photography. In high school, I bought my first Pentax K1000 camera and always enjoyed the therapy taking photographs provided. While in college, I took an interesting Physics class called ‘Light and Color.’ The instructor had us take two slides a week that were accompanied by a single page explanation of each of the natural phenomenon depicted. It obviously had to be a beautiful photograph and properly describe physics of that photo. There were the requisite rainbows and lightning images, but it also made me understand on a deeper level the physics behind the beauty of why the sun distorts as it sinks into the sea each night.

Of course in today’s world, photography has changed completely from what it was with negatives and print photography to something that all of us can create easily on our phones. Social media allows each of us the ability to show friends & family our world enhanced with applications that might exaggerate reality. However, I am still a HUGE fan! Except maybe for those Snapchat animal faces… please stop scaring me!

I recently combined my love of photography with a little "digital scavenger hunt" and snapped a handful of photos from around the winery and asked our Facebook fans to see if they could guess what I had photographed. (If you want to try your hand at guessing, scroll down, but be careful! The answers are below so no peeking until you're ready!)

It was a fun challenage for me to find items of my daily winery life and stop to photograph them. See how many you recognize!

markham scavenger hunt

Ready for the answers?

  1. Barrel Washer – The red wine stains show we have been rinsing barrels after a recent Merlot barrel racking.
  2. Stone Cellar Wall – This doorway in the stone cellar looks much like it did when Bruce Markham first put his name on the winery 40 years ago in 1977.
  3. c.1887 Tax Bill – One of many historical documents we have from when our stone cellar was known as the Laurent Winery. This one shows Jean Laurent had 65,000 gallons (over 25,000 cases) of wine in the cellar at a cost of 12¢ per gallon!
  4. Eucalyptus stump – We saved a wedge from the 100+ year old eucalyptus trees that were removed from the front of the winery earlier in the year for sentimental reasons.
  5. Stainless Steel Tank Jacket – All of our stainless steel tanks are wrapped with these dimpled jackets. The one shown is sweating because the thermostat is turn on to chill the wine inside, this also allows us to control fermentations during harvest.
  6. Soil Map – This is a 1933 Napa Valley soil map that is framed in the laboratory showing 64 distinct soils that are known to our area. In our own estate vineyards, we have 5 that predominate each of the ranches.
  7. Catwalk – All of our tanks have catwalks that allow us to safely work with grapes and wine while they are in tank. Our cellar master, Robert Diaz, was awaiting grapes arrival into a tank during harvest and levitating above the catwalk.
  8. Cash Still – This is a piece of laboratory equipment that we use to monitor the volatile acidity in wine on a monthly basis. Volatile acidity is what we think of as vinegar, which would cause the wine to spoil and thus using this apparatus allows us to better wines.
  9. Cork Bark – Did you know that corks come from the bark of a tree? Every 9 years the cork oak bark is stripped in Portugal and used to punch out corks before they are shipped to be processed and branded here in California.

markham scavenger hunt