Saturday morning, 4.30am. While France sleeps, the competition are working.
I used to make the mistake of thinking that we had five days in a week in which we could harvest, from monday to friday. I then worked out that nature doesn’t take the weekend off, so Daniel, Nelly and I now focus on simply getting the timing right. Having not picked since wednesday 17th, the old semillon vines in Les Trois Hectares are ready to go. The grapes taste great, the analysis looks good, and the weather forecast is a worry for the middle of next week – and we’ve got a lot of white grapes out there. Over 13 hectares, in fact, or 33 acres. We could harvest the whole lot in a day but we’d lose the morning freshness.
We record the timing of the trailors arriving full of grapes to the chai, the temperature of the grapes, and the probable alcohol. It’s early and cold. 8℃. Lovely. 12.8 potential alcohol – good for semillon.
At least the dogs get an early run out.