harvest – 6th & 7th september

Update 9.9.2011(8.9.2011)billn

Tuesday was a relatively quiet day at the home domaine, lucky considering the loss of a team-member, so I chose to roll it into Wednesday’s report. Incredibly given that every day for that last 10 was forecast to rain (two days out) the team remain warm and dry – only the short shower of Sunday morning remains in the memory. There is still rain forecast, but most are now ignoring those forecasts.

Tuesday: Pinot from Ladoix was the only delivery of the day; a very nice plot that’s 100% biodynamically farmed – maybe that’s why about 12% was eventually discarded for a combination of sins – rot or just clumsy bunches of grapes with questionable ripeness. It’s worth pointing out that (including those vines that follow) the average amount discarded this year has been at about the 5% level, spanning 3-12%. Only a couple of plots (Santenay Comme and this Ladoix) have gone over 10%, so this is historically very low, excepting the ‘exceptionals’ like 2005 and 2009.

Wednesday: Plenty of grapes today and ones that looked rather good too. You already saw a pic of the Lavaux St.Jacques in yesterday’s ‘Facebook bunches’ note, but they were nice clusters of small berries – similar to the Vosne vieilles vignes of last week. 7% were discarded after triage. Then came Charmes-Chambertin; the grapes looked just as good as the Lavaux, but were probably picked in the nick of time as they were completely ripe and the individual grapes were becoming a little fragile – because of that 8% were triaged.

Two whites also hit the triage table; Beaune Lulune and Meursault Les Luchets – clean and with good pH – a happy team.

In the cuverie some of the ferments are just about starting and the colour seems to be extracting relatively easily. In some cuvées there seems to be a bit more tartaric acid than usual – lower malic usually indicates a warm growing season – but there’s no point giving any detail at this stage as it’s only the free-run juice that has provided that glimpse – real numbers will come after extraction when the grapes have been pigeaged, remontaged, delestaged or just plain pressed – let’s see.

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