Wine making at Ch. Grand Puy-Ducasse and Paradise Rescued, the malolactic is going well..

The October edition of Revue du Vin de France contained an interesting interview with the owner of Ch. Grand-Puy Ducasse, 5th Classed Growth property in Pauillac, Medoc – a star chateau in Bordeaux. I was somewhat stunned by the similarities of what they do and how they make their wine to what Paradise Rescued has tried to achieve in 2010. Although they haven’t gone fully “organic” with their viticulture (and I should add that converting 40 hectares is no five minute task!), their wine making and grape selection looks very similar to that chosen by Pascale and Albane. Grand-Puy Ducasse harvests exclusively by hand, sorts manually and then destems the bunches before fermentation in stainless steel vats. After racking, the malolactic fermentation is also completed in the vats before maturation in oak barrels for 9 to 12 months. Even their yields are very similar to what we will achieve for 2010. Nice to know that we are in good company!! And nice work, Pascale and Albane – we have a top team. In the photo above, Pascale shows you a sample of our young wine – brilliant colour!!

In our winery in Cardan, our analyses show that with the installation of the heating, the malolactic fermentation is progressing nicely. Pascale reports that the wine is starting to stabilise nicely – only 6 weeks to go until I get my first taste.

There was too much to write this week on what I have been reading and learning about organic wines in Bordeaux and France. So I will come back to that topic next week. Sœur Petite has mailed me to say that she will have some new photos for us as the vines settle down for winter. I look forward to once again sharing the latest news with you.