September 11, 2014

We started the day out in one of the Aligote vineyards flagging cordons (arms) of vines

which did not have much fruit on them in order to later have them converted over to

cane-pruning in hopes of increasing productivity. It was quite pleasant being out in the

sun with a lovely view of the hills of Volnay and Pommard to the west. Then it was time

for more cluster sampling and a trip to the communal laboratory to press the samples

and to have a late morning beer…

After lunch I was surprised to learn that we were going out to begin the 2014 harvest

by picking the Pommard premier cru Les Pezerolles and the Beaune premier cru Les

Aigrots (red)—two of the parcels hit hardest by the June hail storm. The harvest crew

was not scheduled to arrive until next Wednesday, so I put my Clos Pepe harvesting

training to good use and cut down clusters with clippers (just like what we use back in

the US) for the rest of the afternoon. We were back to the winery by 5 p.m. and had the

clusters sorted, destemmed, and bucketed into the tank by 6:00 p.m. To me the largest

difference between harvesting in Burgundy versus the Sta. Rita Hills is the time of day.

In California we harvest either at night or very early morning in order to bring the grapes

in cold; in Burgundy everyone harvests during daylight hours throughout the entire day.

Friday morning we went back and finished harvesting the Les Aigrots parcel. It was

quite striking how much of an effect the hail had on the yields. On some vines that were

protected by a trellis post, there might be 12-20 clusters, whereas on the most heavily

damaged vines there might be an individual berry (not kidding). We finished processing

the grapes by early afternoon, then prepared for the first Beaujolais harvest on Monday.

After work beers in the winery courtyard launched us into a relaxing weekend.

 

DSC_0812 DSC_0789 DSC_0785 DSC_0784 Volnay Les Aigrots Beaune Premier Cru Les Aigrots Beaune Premier Cru DSC_0734 Les Pezerolles Pommad Premier Cru IMG_20140909_125006670_HDR

 

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