June 20, 2012So we started with rain. No big deal. We plod on, even if the mistiness sort of made it hard to appreciate the view on top of the hilly vine-growing region.
|Sonia in full lecture-mode on vine-growing|
|Poppies and wildflowers. Not grapevines or anything, but still very pretty|
|Limestone. The Burgundy grape varieties, Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, thrives on well-drained clay-limestone soil|
|Budding baby grapes|
|What caused this I wonder?|
|Little seedlings. They will be used to replace any dead or dying old vine.|
The facility sports some modern equipment, like the grape-presser that uses an inflatable balloon within a cylindrical metal hull that will press the grapes. The balloon will not press the grape too hard that the seeds break and release undesired flavors into the juice-that-would-be-wine. The juice is then fermented in either large steel vats or oak barrels. The barrels will add to the flavor, but oakiness is not exactly desired in Burgundy wine. Sonia buys her oak barrels second-hand.
|A modern grape-presser with an inflatable balloon to press the grapes.|
|Large steel fermentation vats.|
The wines are tasted twice a day (if I remember correctly), one first thing in the morning and another one, later. Then again, I might be confused with cow or goat milking, but I'm pretty sure the wine is tasted more than once. The sediments in the barrels are also stirred to rile up the yeast and add to the flavor.
We then got to taste some of the fermenting wine, which were cool, fresh, and crisp.
|There is wine in there|
|Sampling the wine. Note the great big wine pipette.|
|This was heavenly|
|Our picnic spread|
|Tentative tasting of truffle chips|
|Notice how everyone seems very uncertain about these chips|
|Wei Jie was particularly excited. They were truffel potato chips, after all.|
|My bread with the knob at the end.|
|I mean, it is after all, microbiology|
|These are amazing|
|Random flower shot, because the place was full of it and it was beautiful|
|'For the cheeses....'|
|A view of the place. The thick clouds makes it look rather dramatic|
|The Bourdon house|
|The certificates for the award-winning cheeses|
|Our wine and cheese spread|
|I am very happy with the amount of cheese and wine I am consuming|
We were too full from the picnic to eat more cheese, which was a shame because they were great.
We managed to get a glance of the cheese lab where the cheeses are made and aged.
|The cheese lab|
|French signs. I need to work on my French reading skills.|
|The goats were very excited to see us too|
|The milking contraption|
|All farms would have flies. Flypaper comes in handy.|
- Louisa Lee