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Harvest 2017

Posted by on 17 Oct 2017 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

The 2017 harvest is over. The grapes have been picked, fermentation has finished and we pressed the wines a couple of days ago. Quantity is excellent but very, very small quantities. Here are some photos of the 2017 harvest. Handpicking, (very) small batch vinification, pressing and, finally, a praying mantis basking on some grape skins.

Harvest 2017

Harvest 2017

harvest 2017

harvest 2017

Pressing Syrah

Pressing Carignan

Mante religieuse

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It’s a bug’s life in the vineyard

Posted by on 12 Jul 2017 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

Some bugs in our Carignan vineyard

The vineyard is a busy with bugs at the moments. Mercifully none that are harmful to the grapes. These photos were taken yesterday in our Carignan vineyard.

This elegant fella is difficult to spot. First time I’ve seen one of these this year.

Green stick insect

Cicadas are everywhere at the moment. Dive-bombing their way through the vineyard and making a racket. The sound of the mediterranean.

Cicada resting on vine

Ephippiggers are very striking. This one is very green but they also come with black stripes and look like humbugs.

Ephippigger or bush cricket

The ubiquitous snail. More in our garden than in the vineyard.

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Friday photo – Syrah grapes

Posted by on 30 Jun 2017 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

Syrah pre veraison

This very green photo is of a fine looking bunch of Syrah grapes. The next stage is ‘veraison’, when the grapes turn red which should start in 2 to 3 weeks.

The whole vineyard is looking extremely green at the moment. The vines are much bushier than last year thanks to the plentiful rainfall we have had in the spring and also this week. It is also very noisy in the vineyard. The cicadas are in full voice and are very active, dive bombing as you walk along the rows.

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Pruning

Posted by on 27 Feb 2017 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

Pruning Syrah

Started pruning the Syrah today. Sunny with a light breeze so perfect weather for it. So nice that the ladybirds ventured out too.

Pruning Syrah

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Rainy days

Posted by on 15 Feb 2017 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

Raindrops on …vines!

Last year was one of the driest on record, which is why we are very happy that it has been raining for several days now. The road up to our vines was impassable yesterday.

And when we did manage to get past it this morning, we found a very large rock partially blocking the track. Looks like another one will join it soon too.

The graph below shows how dry 2016 was compared to the previous (average) year. The rainfall stats come from a weather station in Azillanet, about 20 km from us. Mailhac actually had even less rain, which explains why our yield was so low in 2016.

That’s why we are so happy that there is so much at the moment, to top up those all important reserves of water which will sustain the vines during the growing season.

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Harvesting Syrah and Carignan

Posted by on 1 Oct 2016 in Blog, Uncategorized | 0 comments

Harvest 2016, cont’d

We have harvested the rest of our Syrah and all of our Carignan.

Ripe, healthy grapes but tiny yield

The grapes are perfectly ripe and beautifully healthy – just not many of them. The Carignan grapes are particularly small so we decided to co-ferment the Syrah and Carigan, with the Syrah providing more juice. So there will be no 100% Carignan from 2016.

 

Here are some photos from the day.

Carignan - why the low yields?

Carignan – why the low yields?

Carignan

Carignan

Carignan harvest

Carignan harvest

Syrah harvest

Syrah harvest

img_1492

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