The combined effect of the heat and the fungus turns the grapes brown. The skins of the grapes become permeable and water is allowed to evaporate. The grapes then lose moisture and become more concentrated, resulting in very high levels of sugar and aromatic compounds.
Harvesting can then be done by hand, with each berry picked in successive selections, only stopping when rain falls as it's important that the grapes are dry when removed from the vine. A team of forty five pickers meticulously cover every inch of the vineyards to gather each grape, at its optimum level of concentration. This means they are botrytised, i.e. transformed by the noble rot. The others are left on the vine until the next selection is made. Harvests on our vineyards can thus stretch out from September to November, after four to eight successive selections.
Sweet wines more than deserve their name of "gold wines", rich and prized they are just as rare as the precious metal.
One vine only yields one glass, while at other vineyards it will yield an entire bottle.
We use pneumatic presses to press our grapes. The musts obtained then undergo gentle fermentation in small temperature-controlled stainless steel tanks. These receptacles are the perfect way to control the fermentation process of our different batches.
Once fermented, the wines are aged in barrels over 18 months and regularly racked, before being bottled to acquire the qualities that come with maturity.
The great vintages can be aged like this for several decades. But don't trouble yourself with the hows and whys. Enjoy them as you wish, young or old. After all, the joy they bring is what matters most!
When the berries reach the perfect state of rot, we pick the grapes by hand.
We employ a team of 45 pickers who carry out successive selections across our three estates.
We practise late harvests, a patient operation that generally starts in late September and continues until November.
Pressing & vinification
Once gathered, the yield is pressed in pneumatic presses.
The juice is immediately poured into stainless steel tanks equipped with a temperature-control system where it undergoes fermentation for a period of three weeks to a month.
After vinification, our wines are taken down in French oak barrels.
Every three months they are racked and regularly tasted to check how they are evolving. To reduce the risks of oxidation as best we can, we fill the barrels every week.
After the ageing process comes a crucial moment for us and our wines. Our first wines are blended from our finest batches and are the result of long hours of tasting and discussion.
They are then bottled on the estate.
The start of a long journey for them!