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The marriage of wine and oak

In a few weeks time our barrels will again be full of wine. Our vendange (French for harvest) is only a few days away, and with 8 different grape varieties in our vineyard it will probably last 2-3 weeks as each variety ripens at different times. Our insistence on hand picking means rows and rows of vine to go through, only the grapes get to rest on the tractor!

This year we are planning to make 9 different wines within our Cuvée Classique, Grand Vin and Sparkling range, all will be certified organic.

Once in the winery only our premium range Grand Vins have contact with oak barrels. Before the Summer we select the rows and grape varieties that will be used in our various wines. This year we will produce three Grand Vin wines: our ever popular pure Malbec red, the unique Cabernet Franc red and, for the second year, a Sauvignon Gris white. Our 2013 Tour de Belfort Grand Vins have already sold out in France over the Summer period but we have saved a few palettes which will soon be released in the UK.

Our premium wines are made in carefully chosen oak barrels safely lying in our new barrel cellar which is carved into the rock. Unlike our Cuvée Classique which are a blend of two or three grape varieties, all Grand Vins are made with a single grape variety. It’s the marriage of tannins and flavours from the oak barrel that add further complexities and aromas.

We have chosen the well-known Bourgogne company Rousseau to supply our French oak barrels. The origin of the oak, the know-how of the "cooper" (barrel maker) and the variety of roast levels available will all influence the quality of the wine. We use different style of barrels for each wine. For our reds we chose "Forte" and "Video" for elegance and nobility, for our white we selected "Piano" or "Allegro" for freshness and fruitiness.

The making of wine is a process take takes several months but will be enjoyed in a sip!

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