September 25, 2006 Martine

A relatively cold and wet winter, followed by a late spring with no frost… a blooming season on schedule… it seems that no one had to worry!  July was scorching, then August was cold, overcast and wet, with unseasonably cool temperatures from the Mediterranean coast to Chablis. Upon my arrival in Macon, I immediately wanted to hear about the harvest from Dominique Cornin.  He was a total pessimist, complaining that veraison had stopped because of the cold weather in August, and that after two days of heavy rain, mildew had developed.  By September 6th, the temperature had risen to 90˚F…

October 1, 2005 Martine

In mid-June, I started to inquire about when to anticipate the next harvest.  June is the month of blooming grapes.  If temperatures are correct and there is no rain, flowering can last two weeks. However, if the temperature drops, or if it rains, then blooming will be interrupted, which will delay the maturity of the grapes, thus flowering will happen in two stages. Emmanuel Rouget, Henri Jayer’s nephew, reminded me of the white Lily prophecy.  It so happens that the Lily blooms about the same time as the vine. They are everywhere with their fragrant smell and beautiful tall flowers….

September 15, 2004 Martine

At the end of August, the outlook was grim. Following the flowering, the cool nights of June led to oidium (powdery mildew). July was wet. August was overcast and cool, which meant no luminosity—so necessary for the ripening of the grapes. Then, two major hail storms unfurled over Pommard and Volnay, all the way to Marsannay devastating vineyards and causing 10% to 80% damage to the vines. On the positive side, the wet winter that followed the severe draught of the Summer of 2003, revived the severely damaged but shallow-rooted younger vines. It seemed to be a promising normal crop…