Joseph Novitski

Selected Works

Nonfiction
"It is quite simply a fascinating evocation of the pain and the pleasures that every farmer must experience but... few can convey... "
–Frank J. Prial, The New York Times
"You will want to cheer. You will want to go sailing."
–Christopher Lehmann-Haupt,
The New York Times, February 11, 1988.

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A Vineyard Year

"The pictures that accompany Mr. Novitski's text are by Nick Pavloff. They are beautiful enough to make one think this might be another handsome coffee-table wine book. That would be a great mistake."
The New York Times

"The lasting dividend of Novitski's presence for... years in the Dry Creek Valley is his writing and Nick Pavloff's photographs - a lyrical record of a memorable year in California's grape country."
Wines and Vines, February 1984


Excerpt:

"On a certain spring day, every year in our vineyards, the accumulating weight of hundreds of fragments of work done day by day, for more than a month, seems to slide into place at once and fit together for a clear and perfect purpose. This sudden coalescing yields one long moment of exhilaration. That morning, the air is as clear and tasty as if it had poured all night from a crystal cup. At least for that day, which has no fixed date, the cold sting is gone from the pre-dawn darkness and warmth grows steadily with the sun. The vines stand with every green shoot upraised, and the first hour of sunlight pours through the whole length of each of those shoots, turning them all into translucent green wands. After a stuttering start stretching over four weeks or more, the shoots are about three feet long by that poised moment. They reach skyward like arms upraised in joy."
A Vineyard Year, Chapter 6 - The Grand Period of Growth