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Training the vines at Domaine la Cabotte

Last Saturday, we spent a very enjoyable and sunny day in the Rhone Valley with Marie-Pierre and Eric, the winemakers at Domaine la Cabotte.  We were there for a Discovery Experience Day to learn more about winemaking, notably the all important work in the vineyard.

Following the coffee and introductions, we headed to the area of the vineyard where the Gourmet Odyssey vines are located.  A small personalised blackboard identified the micro-plot of adopted vines for each client, and we took a few minutes to get to know them!

Rent a wine in France with Gourmet Odyssey

The vineyard at Domaine la Cabotte is organically and biodynamically certified, which means paying special attention to the vines and their environment.  Eric explained the difference between the conventional, organic, and biodynamic approaches to tending to the vines.

Adopt your own vines

We then walked to the lower part of the vineyard where Eric and Marie-Pierre had set aside some work for us to do.  On the way, Eric showed us the different grape varietals planted in the vineyard and brought us up to date with the work that has been already done during the winter and spring.

Make your own wine with Gourmet Odyssey in France

Our task for the day was training the vines, which involves raising the training wires and ensuring that each of the branches grow inside the wires.  This helps the vines by supporting the weight of the foliage and future grapes, and also helps to keep a clear passage for the tractors.
Eric & Marie-Pierre showed us how to pull the wires apart, raise them and then attach them together using a small clip.  We then spread out in the vineyard to get stuck in!

Wine tasting in France

Working in the vineyard is good for opening up the taste buds!  Back at the winery, we started the tasting with a fresh white wine from the estate, which was most welcome after the heat in the vineyard.  We then tasted the Côtes du Rhône Massif d'Uchaux Garance, which is the red wine chosen for the Gourmet Odyssey Wine Experience, followed by the winery's Châteauneuf-du-Pape.

Tasting Organic wines in France with Gourmet Odyssey

We continued the wine tasting in the chai over lunch.

Adopt your own vines and make your wine

In the afternoon, we went for a short walk, following the path through the wood and vines.  This enabled us to discover the different terroirs and Eric also showed us a plot that he had recently replanted.

Discovery winemakers and make your wine

The day finished back in the chai.  Here Eric introduced us to the vinification side of winemaking and talked more about biodynamic winemaking.

Rent vines in France with Gourmet Odyssey

Many thanks to Eric and Marie-Pierre, and to all those who came to share the day with us.  See you soon for the harvest!


  • Hi and thanks for this lovely discovery day and total immersion in the world of winemaking. It's very enjoyable, instructive and a great moment shared. Definitely to do again!

    Good luck to you Mark and say hello to our hosts.

    René & MC

  • What a great day, rich in information. Thanks to Marie Pierre and Eric, as well as Mark for his very warm welcome, without of course forgetting the wine tasting and discovery of the domaine's wines which was very interesting and ever so well told.

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The Gourmet Odyssey Wine Experience

Adopt a Vine in France and Follow the Making of Your Own Wine !

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