Winter pruning has started and the weather has been cold! Almost every morning the vineyard is covered with frost.
Meanwhile, in the cellar, we’re pressing off the last tanks and putting the wine in barrels. We bought new Radoux and Saury barrels, and 4 “demi-muids” or large 600 liter barrels for the Syrah Edición Limitada. Now is the time to decide which wine merits more new oak, and which doesn’t.
The pomace, left after pressing, in composted before it goes back to the vineyard, to enrich the soil.
This year we decided to plough the whole vineyard, to get some air into the soil, improve infiltration of rainwater and stimulate growth. We’re also doing experiments with cover crops. Last year that wasn’t such a success, as we were a little late with sowing and the soil wasn’t prepared well enough. Hopefully this year will give more results. The mustard is growing very fast, the oats have shown less signs of life. Apart from the utility, I like the way a ploughed soil looks in winter.
We’ve also been buying stable manure again this winter, as manure and compost bring not only nutrients, but also new life to the soil. There’s a nice pile waiting to be spread out in the vineyard. Orders have been coming in from different parts of the world. At the moment we’re about to ship to Holland, Canada and the US. This is the first time we’re exporting to Holland, and our hopes are high! While we were preparing an order, it was raining cats and dogs. To make matters worse, the tractor wasn’t able to handle the weight of the pallets. But with a little human weight added, that was fixed. Man and machine, what a combination!
The results from the photo session with Matt Wilson also came in. There have been all kinds of comments and discussions. This is one of the more controversial ones. Flanked by two beautiful girls from Santiago (our manager and her assistant), I was the dirty one who had to do all the hard work!
Apart from that, everything has been fairly quiet, which is just as well, as it’s been so cold and rainy. Today I sent the workers home earlier, as more rain threatened, and there wasn’t much left to do. Personally, I took shelter at home, intending to make good use of all this firewood!