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Pruning in the Rhone Valley


And so another year starts at Domaine la Cabotte with the arrival of a new set of adoptive vine owners for the 2014 vintage. Last Sunday we visited the winery for a Discovery Experience Day under a sunny blue sky. The aim of the day was to understand all of the work that is carried out in the vineyard from winter up until the grapes reach their optimum maturity at harvest time.

 

Explaining how to prune the vine

 

In the vineyard, Marie-Pierre introduced us to the winery and the Massif d'Uchaux region, telling us how she and her husband, Eric, have developed the estate during the past 20 years. She led us to a plot of vines that had yet to be pruned.

Here, she explained why it is important to prune vines, and showed us how to do it. Under the watchful eye of Marie-Pierre and each armed with a pair of croppers, we chose which branches to cut. At first it demanded much reflection, but we soon became more confident, and managed to finish the rows which had been left for us work on!

Pruning the vines

Marie-Pierre explained the different pruning methods that are used, and the different yields that each vine plot produces. She then talked about all of the work that will be carried out in the vineyard between now and the harvest.

Vine adoption in the Vallée du Rhône

After the hard work, we visited our adopted vines and saw how they had been pruned. We also took some pictures before returning to the winery to taste some of the wines and savour the meal prepared by Marie-Pierre. The winery is lucky enough to have a few truffle oaks, and Coka, Marie-Pierre's dog, is an adept at sniffing them out! After the meal, she even gave a demonstration how she finds the "black diamond".

Explaining the vinification Domaine la Cabotte

We finished the day in the chai where Marie-Pierre explained how the grapes will be received at harvest time once they have reached maturity and have been picked. She then showed us the biodynamic treatments used to care for the vines, and explained the principals of biodynamic farming.

Explaining the biodynamic farming

Another very informative and enjoyable day, thanks to Marie-Pierre's passion, and the good cheer of our participants!

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