Tour Grand Faurie
THE WORK OF THE VINE OVER THE SEASONS
APRIL TO MAY
This is the beginning of a series of preventive treatments, which protect the vines against the most common diseases such as mildew and oïdium, and against red spider mites.
It is also the period when we replace dead vines. We apply manure and potash and if necessary foliar fertilizer.
From May 10 we start to remove the counter-bud to limit the yield. We also remove the branches growing along the foot of the vine with a shovel.
Since 2003 Franck has given up working the soil and prefers to leave it to natural grass. Franck and Patrick mow five to six times a year using a straddle tractor equipped with mower.
There are still a few treatments to do which we stop three weeks before the harvest date. It is holiday-time and we receive visitors to see our cellars followed by a pleasant tasting of our wines.
At the end of August, we start to prepare the harvest, we clean the tanks, check the harvesting equipment, the sorting table, the thermoregulation (installed since 1997), the pumps…
One last time we mow in between the rows of vines, and cross our fingers that the end of the summer and into the autumn will be sunny.
It is the most critical period with the choice and decision of the harvest date when everything has to go very fast. It requires good organization and above all a good team and a good atmosphere.
The harvest is done by hand and lasts from five to ten days depending on the quantity of grapes to be picked. The rhythm is fast, on the one hand, as we have already thinned out the leaves, and on the other hand as half of the team are seasonal workers who come back every year, people from Charente, Toulouse, Pau, Brittany. We always form two teams. There are generally about thirty of us in all.
THE SAME TEAM
Young and old, everyone works in a good mood. Meals are always well appreciated. They are special moments particularly for the children and for our fond memories. It is very important that the winegrowers are present and join in with the rest of their team.
THE WORK OF THE MEN OF THE SOIL
THE MEN OF THE SOIL
The winegrower is the person best placed to know his terroirs, his vineyard, to work it in the best possible way to enable him to obtain the best quality from his harvest. It is his choices that will give the wine its personality, its imprint or its signature.
THE TERROIRS, THE GRAPE VARIETIES
First of all, let’s remember that we have different terroirs and different grape varieties. Each plot and each grape variety is vinified separately. The Cabernet Franc is kept separate because it is the latest grape variety to ripen, it brings acidity and notes of bell pepper. The Merlot is the king grape variety, it has structure, flesh and volume
Once the sorting of the berries is done, they are crushed and put in cement vats for fermentation.
All our vats are thermo-regulated since 1997, which allows us to control the temperature automatically via the control board; each vat is equipped with panels in which either hot or cold water circulates. Both the alcoholic and malolactic fermentation are done in the vats.
When the fermentation is finished, we select the wine which will be proposed to be “Grand Cru”. It will go into barrels at the end of December for ageing for one year.
We work with different coopers choosing French oak from central France (Allier) and Aquitaine. After a year of barrel ageing, the wine goes back into the vat where it rests for another six months to settle and be blended into a homogeneous lot.
The wine is bottled at the château at the end of August or early September.
La mise en bouteille se fait au château fin août ou début septembre.