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A great harvest in Chablis


We spent a very enjoyable weekend for the harvest  in Chablis at Domaine Jean-Marc Brocard. The nice weather of the past few weeks remained in place, and had helped provide nice ripe bunches of grapes, with a good balance between sugar and acidity. Perfect conditions for harvesting!

 

Adopt a vine in Burgundy

 

After the coffee and croissants, we headed out into the vineyard to join up with the team of harvesters. Micheline, the team leader, distributed the secateurs and buckets to each of us, so we were equipped with the material necessary to harvest. She explained which grapes to pick and which to leave behind. We then spread out among the rows to get down to work.

 

Unique wine gift in Burgundy France

 

In tandem with the pickers, the other important role in the vineyard during harvest time is that of the porters. We took it in turns to carry a basket on our back, and when the harvesters had filled their buckets, they then emptied them into the basket. The basket can hold more grapes than you would think, and quickly becomes rather heavy! To empty it, the porter carries his load to a waiting trailer, climbs a ladder, and then lets the grapes fall over his shoulder.

 

adopt a vine in France and get involved in the harvest

 

With such a great harvest, the buckets and baskets filled up quickly, and the morning passed by in a flash. Back at the winery, we had earned our aperitif. We tasted a Petit Chablis « Les Plantes » 2012, a Chablis « La Boissonneuse » 2011 and a Chablis 1er Cru « Les Vaudevey » 2011 before sitting down to lunch, where we continued the wine tasting.

 

Personalised wine gifts in France

 

After lunch, we made our way to the fermentation hall to see where the harvested grapes are weighed and put into the press. Here, Pierre and Julien explained how the grapes are pressed, put into the vats and how the juice is separated from the sediment.

 

Rent a vine gift in Chablis and participate in the harvest

 

We then walked to the Boissonneuse vineyard where the adopted vines are located and to take a few pictures.

 

Wine lover gift in Chablis

 

The day finished with a tasting of two different grape juices, to compare the juice before and after settling. The juice will soon start to ferment to turn the sugar into alcohol, but we'll have to wait until next year for one of the Vinification Experience Days before we next get the chance to taste the wine!

Many thanks to Pierre, Micheline and Julien for welcoming us, and to all the participants for the work during the harvest and their good humour throughout the day.

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