The final “triage” fruit selection for #Cloud9 #CabFranc

It’s getting dark. I close the winery doors for the night as the rain starts to softly fall. We can smile now…after one of the hardest vineyard seasons on record where Mother Nature was completely in control throughout….we managed one win. We harvested at the perfect time.

What a season, what a finale! After many cold wet mildew ravaged weeks in May and June followed by two months of heat and no rain, many Bordeaux vineyards saw much of their low yield harvest shrivel up and turn to raisins and the rest start to rot! At Paradise Rescued, the lead into the harvest was perfect: we harrowed the vineyard soil just prior to some good rain in mid September, after which it turned warm and dry allowing a slow steady ripening. Yesterday it was hot and 30°C, today

Sylvie and Laurent bring in the Merlot from the vineyard

light sunshine 23°C for the harvest and tomorrow the autumn rains will start – autumn has arrived. The Cabernet Franc was at an average 12° Baumé and our first ever tiny harvest of old vine Merlot closer to 13°. There was minimal rot and with our first ever final “triage” or fruit reselection just prior to destalking and crushing, the quality of the final cru should be good – time and expert vinification will tell!

But the heroes of yesterday were the harvest team. Led by Pascale in the vineyard, Albane in the winery everyone contributed in a unique and productive group. The atmosphere was incredible. And from a sustainability perspective, it was fantastic to have so many local pickers and helpers from our beautiful village Cardan – that makes it so special and enables us to build a better passionate team and support for the future. Who will ever forget Josiane’s mega paëlla? Thank

The Harvest 2012 team and Josiane’s amazing Paella

you to an amazing group of people for a memorable day!

It’s raining harder now, the vines can start to relax. We hope we can now convert that beautiful fruit into beautiful wines that reflect the passion, dedication, love and friendship that has gone into making them. My smile deepens….