While young people around the world came out to defend the climate, the people of Burgundy were also focused on their climats. One of the estate’s most emblematic climats is the Clos Blanc de Vougeot that we finished off this morning, making it an historic day.
DAY 12 – FRIDAY 20 SEPTEMBER
The summer has had a stay of execution and its beautiful light continues to flood the Côte as we gather as many grapes as possible before the rain forecast for Sunday. Today, the wind had dropped but the temperatures were still chilly with a maximum of 20°C, with the heatwave is now a distant memory.
DAY 11 – TUESDAY 19 SEPTEMBER
This morning, the cool temperatures confirmed that fall is approaching fast, as the vines begin to turn gold. The brisk wind sent a chill through the pickers, who gathered while it was still dark at 6.45am to be in the vineyards by 7. These are the final days of toil; we will have finished early into next week.
DAY TEN – WEDNESDAY 18 SEPTEMBER
On this very favorable fruit day in the lunar calendar, the sun may have been flooding the Côte, but the northeast wind was blowing quite hard, with gusts up to 40kph, and the temperature suddenly dropped. We could really feel the difference and the pickers arrived with hoods up and long sleeves covering their arms. Perhaps this is finally the end of the heatwave temperatures we’ve been seeing.
DAY NINE – TUESDAY 17 SEPTEMBER
The vines are showing the first signs of the end of the growth cycle, the leaves slowly turning yellow or brown, even though green is still dominant. These subtle changes signal that the vine has now put all its strength into the fruit, and is now preparing for a period of dormancy.
DAY EIGHT – MONDAY 16 SEPTEMBER
As we head into the second week, the harvests are in full swing, and after a well-earned Sunday rest, our valiant pickers are now hardened against sunstroke, the odd cut finger, the long days and aching backs. The pace is good, and we are right on track, with no hitches.
DAY SEVEN – SUNDAY 15 SEPTEMBER
It was action stations on the Côte! It seemed as if everyone had come together on this, another bright and warm day. Groups of pickers dot the vineyards, busily toiling up and down the slopes. The trucks made their way along Route 74, lines of cars building up behind the ponderous high-clearance tractors as they transport the harvesting crates back to the winery.
DAY SIX – SATURDAY 14 SEPTEMBER
The sky was cloudy this morning and one might have thought there was a whiff of fall in the air, accentuated by the leaves which have prematurely dried on the trees. No chance! The temperature carried on climbing throughout the day before exceeding 30°C in the late afternoon. So we decided to work through lunch and stop early to avoid this peak.
DAY FIVE – FRIDAY 13 SEPTEMBER 2019
No Friday 13 horrors for us today! The bright sunny weather made ideal conditions for the pickers. It was already 22°C at 9.30am. On the Côte de Beaune, we started on the large vineyard of Savigny-lès-Beaune Premier Cru Les Marconnets. This actually comprises four plots covering a total of two hectares, which will probably take two days to gather. The bunches were very big and quite healthy, with a little rot that was soon eliminated on the winery sorting table.
DAY FOUR – THURSDAY 12 SEPTEMBER
It was a bright and hot day for picking simultaneously on both the Côte de Beaune and the Côte de Nuits, with 34 feisty snippers per crew. Thomas is running the Beaune gang while Henri is in charge of the Nuits team.
DAY THREE – WEDNESDAY 11 SEPTEMBER
The weather forecast promises steadily rising temperatures through to the weekend, and Wednesday’s sunshine seems to confirm this prediction. The harvests are still in the early stages, and today is the last day with a single crew in the vines. In other words, the winery had better make the most of this relaxed pace, before things really start to ramp up with the arrival of a second crew on the Côte de Nuits tomorrow.
DAY TWO – TUESDAY 10 SEPTEMBER 2019
As a reward for completing our first day, the weather was a gift today with warming temperatures. In the vines, the sunshine also welcomed Julien, our latest arrival from Quebec, with his delightfully lilting accent. In the winery, the warmer weather was also welcome because the pace of work, despite not yet being at full tilt, requires we leave all the doors open, and we’d forgotten how chilly the drafts can be!
DAY ONE – MONDAY 9 SEPTEMBER 2019
A date with a nine in it to begin this vintage blessed by numerology… We embark upon this harvesting adventure with the intention of producing some excellent wines, hoping the numbers and the stars don’t lie: We hope 2019 will be as fine a year as 1999, the estate’s first, as a memory of 1969 and other years blessed with a nine…