Bill Nanson’s Burgundy-Report

The Burgundy-Report’s Bill Nanson working the table de tri avec moi. Maison Camille Giroud 2004

In late August of 2004 I moved out of my San Francisco apartment, put all of my belongings into storage, and relocated to Beaune where I spent four months working the harvest for a small négociant called Camille Giroud. This was the second of three harvests for me, the first being in the Napa Valley in 2001 and the last in Sancerre 2008. Where ever you work the harvest, you can expect to do a lot of cleaning and, at least at a quality conscious winery, spending long hours at the sorting table or what the French call the table de tri. The 2004 vintage in Burgundy was an especially challenging one with damp conditions at harvest and widespread rot in the vineyards due to intermittent hail. Making good wine in Burgundy that year meant tending the sorting table day and night, seperating the rotten grapes from the healthy ones. It’s necessary but tedious work and can definitely be dull at times. Fortunately I had great company that year with stagières coming from all over the world including Londoner Bill Nanson pictured above. Bill writes what I consider to be the definitive report on Burgundy and I read his free online Burgundy-Report religiously. The Summer 2009 issue was recently published and I highly recommend having a look. 

posted on August 20 2009 by jesse

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