Ever since 2009 when our winemaker Eric Monnin first stood in Boutinot Rhône’s highest plots – La Pauline and Les Six Terrasses – he knew that there was a chance to make truly magical wine. That dream is now a reality with the release of ‘Les Six’, Cairanne, Côtes du Rhône Villages 2011 – a unique blend of six varieties rather than the commonplace two (Grenache Noir and Syrah). This is the story of ‘Les Six’…
That’s it! Our harvest is over – in the vineyards at least. All our vines have been picked, all by hand of course, finishing in style with our oldest Grenache Noir from Saint Andéol, some of which date back to the immediate post-war year of 1946. But that’s not the end, nor the beginning of the end – it’s just the end of the beginning. The hard work continues in the cellar every day. All our fermenters are full, so the long days continue to stretch from dawn to dusk monitoring every step of the fermentation as nature takes its course, aided only by our regular remontages and manual pigeages.
October’s here, the harvest is still in full swing and we’re still standing! After a cold night the weather today is again warm and sunny and our team of pickers went high up the slopes of La Montée du Ventabren to harvest old vine Grenache. Back at La Ruche (Cairanne) our cellar is gradually filling up and grapes are slowly turning into wine in our open top tronconiques (wooden fermentation vessels). Today the fermentation in tronconique 10, filled with incredible 53 year old Grenache Noir, came to its natural end and the tank has been racked, filling the cellar with enticing cherry and spice aromas.
The Boutinot Rhône harvest 2012 begins….at last! So far the weather has been perfect (sunny clear days with a good mistral blowing) and now it’s full steam ahead in the vineyard and the cellar. Days are busy and long but satisfying….no time for a long post so here are some images from the past week. A full 2012 vintage report will follow soon.
At last, the refurbishment of our cellar is complete in time for the 2012 harvest. This refurbishment was neither simply a case of opening a few tins of paint nor was it a grand design the likes of which you see in Chile or California. The cellar we acquired when we bought our Cairanne estate in 2010 was perfectly serviceable but our aim was to create the best possible environment for vinifying and maturing our wines. So, after two years of planning and hard graft we wanted to share the pictures with you, including the messy business of cleaning tanks…….