The last few weeks have been super exciting around Maison Harbour. A lot has happened since our last update. Summer has been complicated in Burgundy, although the temperatures have risen since June lifting spirits and moral. The warm weather has brought fierce storms which have not been so gracious.
At the end of July the Cote du Beaune was hit with an awful hail storm that ripped through Savigny, Beaune, Pommard and Volnay. The hail came down in white sheets and did not let up for over 30 minutes ravaging the canopy, grapes and vines. It was a very sad day for many of the grape growers and vintners in the area. Some vineyards reported 80-100% loss of their harvest for the year which will make it the third year in a row the area experiences diminished volumes. We had been in touch with a few grape growers on the Cote du Beaune to source grapes but after the storm most of the grapes were lost and thus the contracts were lost as well. Very disappointing.
On the bright side August has been very productive for us. We have had a lot of projects on the go. One of the most exciting has been pouring the cement in the winery. After taking out the old stones and gravel in the floor we put in a drain, laid the re-bar, poured the cement, smoothed it out and then waited the long week for it to completely dry and it looks great! We also got the hot and cold water hooked up in the winery yesterday which will be very helpful throughout the year. We are just waiting on the electricity to get connected and we will be in business!
We haven’t been the only ones working hard as Gary (Nicholas’ dad) has been tirelessly refurbishing our vertical press and building a platin for the bottom and top . A very time consuming and tough task but the results will be worth it. After we put in the new basket staves and put on a fresh coat of ” food-safe” paint it will look as good as new!
Cuvee 2 was finally taken out of the barrel a few weeks ago and we are currently letting it rest in a stainless steel tank to settle the rest of the lees before bottling. Of course we had to taste the wine again during the racking and we are extremely pleased with its turnout. On the nose we smell small red berries, tangerine and a hint of vanilla from the oak. A fresh attack with an explosion of fruit mid palate, soft tannins, notes of cherries and black pepper on a lingering finish. All over a very pleasant drinking wine!
Despite the difficulties we encountered at the end of July in terms of weather and grape sources we have a few prospective contracts on the Cote du Nuits which is super exciting for us. Most of the final contracts will be made mid-September and even into harvest (expected the first week of October- super late) we are keeping our fingers crossed.
Nick has been busy with all things renovation at the winery, from digging trenches and laying cement to sanding doors and getting the barrel cellar ready. He has been working day and night and it shows, he is getting so buff! I finished my internship at Champy mid-August and have finally been able to get my hands dirty too which has been great. Other than working hard we have been trying to relax a little before harvest, cooking some great meals and enjoy everything Burgundy has to offer. The next few weeks should be equally exciting as the last if not more as we should have some grape contracts made and the harvest just around the corner!