Carurth Cellars Urban Winery Carlsbad

We’re crushing 260 tons of grapes this year, over 100 tons more than we have ever crushed before. This undertaking led us to an idea, let's open the cellar and share the experience with everyone!


Have you ever wanted to know what it's like to be a winemaker during crush season? We're letting people do “punch downs”, a daily task of a winemaker this time of year, every night through Halloween! No experience required, we will teach you everything you need to know upon arrival. 

The first shift available is September 10th 2018 (as of now, but that could change). All shifts start promptly at 6:45pm* and last approx. 45min - 1 hr. We ask that everyone arrive 10min early for a brief training! Note: shifts may get canceled. We don't determine the grape schedule, Mother Earth does, and she does whatever she wants wether we like it or not. Should your shift fall on a night we end up having no grapes to punch down, we will notify you at least 24hrs in advance. 

*Already booked and your confirmation says you start at 6:00pm, not 6:45pm? Sorry for the confusion, your confirmation email is correct! Please come at the time listed in your confirmation email.


Wait...what are “punch downs”?

We use a long pole like tool to push down what's known as the “cap”, made up of all of the solids (skins and seeds) that float to the top of the bin during primary fermentation. Why is this important?

• We want to keep the "cap" wet. Dried skins are a no no.

• We want to introduce oxygen and get the fermentation party started.

• We want to ensure an even fermentation throughout the bin and avoid "hot spots"

• We want to earn our wine at the end of the day! 


What to know before you go...

Wear clothes you don't mind getting dirty, it's likely they will be wine stained by the end of your shift.

This is not the time for high heels! Wear shoes that are comfortable. Something you can rinse is ideal (ie: crocs, water sandals).

There is some effort involved, not a lot, but some. If you have a tender back and you're not interested in a minor work out, this may not be the job for you.

Come prepared to learn. Please be ready to listen and follow all instructions! We take this seriously.

NO BAD ENERGY ALLOWED! We want to put nothing but LOVE & GRATITUDE into the wine! No one likes a bitter wine. 

Have long hair? Please pull it back. Just like food, hair does not belong in wine.

Allergic to sulfites? we don't recommend signing up. 

• Jewelry is OK, but only if it can be submerged in water. You will be dipping your hands and forearms into a bucket of sulfite solution, which is essentially like very strong lemon water - your silver will look all shiny and new! 


After submitting your crush volunteer sign up request above, a Carruth Cellars representative will reach out to confirm your punch down shift or ask about alternative dates and times. Stay tuned and check your spam folder if you do not hear from us within 72 hours.