Day 3 Mon 29 Sep

Sha sha sha sha shattered, I’m in tatters… can’t remember the rest, too knackered.  The real trouble has been the bad combination of the physical stress with sleeplessness – one of the other occupants of the dormitory snored intermittently, but they’ve gone, so I hope I will get sleep tonight.

Up and out, another glorious day, again a cold (three layers of shirts and jackets) morning, shed the outermost or heaviest layer after the mid morning break, then apply an extra layer of suncream at lunchtime and then finally down to the t shirt for the afternoon kind of day.  Cool air, warm sun, nearly cloudless.

First thing we did another bourgogne rouge vineyard east of the village, I lost my bearings a bit, besides Les Paquiers Anne has several parcels within Les Champs d’Argent which is more southerly, I’m not sure where we were exactly today.  Grapes from four different little parcels are blended for her bourgogne rouge.  After lunch we went to Anne’s Chambolle Musigny vineyard.  It is in the westernmost end of the Combe D’Orveau (the east end is premier cru) all the way back to the edge of the forest.  No photo, I was too enchanted (ok, maybe too tired) so will try to get one tomorrow when we go back to finish up.

Again, gorgeous grapes, very little pourriture, and for the first time I found some bunches, or skeletons of bunches, which showed signs of bird damage.  In July I remember thinking I could hear birdsong, but saw very few birds in the vineyards, which surprised me.  I’ve thought the same again the past few days, only saw one bad magpie making a meal in Clos du Tart as I was walking through Morey St. Denis on Friday.  In Les Barreaux, where Anne’s Vosne Romanée parcel is the vines nearest the woods were all covered with bright yellow netting today – I asked about it, and was told it was to protect against the birds, they come out of the woods.  I had also noticed yesterday a lot of shotgun cartridges on the ground there – again, someone confirmed to me they do a bit of shooting there for control.

After we finished for the day, I decided to walk back to the domaine.  Arnaud certainly thought I was crazy, he slowed down and offered me space in his (already full) van, but I explained I wanted to walk, it was ok.  But it’s three kilometres… no worries.  He shook his head, clearly thinking mad english…

It was actually really really nice to walk – not only for my poor back, but the vineyards were incredibly still and silent.  I think I was all the way back to St. Vivant before I heard a tractor in the distance.  The tractors here seem to have a whinge pitched a bit differently from the ones I’m familiar with on english farms.  Or maybe it’s just the french accent.

St. Vivant seems to be mostly harvested, couldn’t see a grape bunch on any of Lalou Bize-Leroy’s mad spiralling vines at the northern end, nor any grapes left on the section opposite La Romanée, nor any of the vines I could see all the way back to the village on the end opposite La Grand Rue.  La Romanée is still un-harvested.  La Tache, as much as I could see from Rue de la Tache, at the foot of the vineyard, looked done – not only could I not see any grapes, but the grass between vines looked pretty trampled.  [Addendum – I may have been wrong in this – having a good look at lunchtime Tuesday I could just about see some bunches hanging down, and there did not seem to be the usual debris of discarded bunches and torn leaves – so maybe not yet.  Either they ruthlessly edit the number of bunches per vine, or the bunches are higher on the vines and the foliage is hiding them.]

Bonne Nuit.

The Chambolle Musigny vineyard, photo taken the following day: