Investments help LGCF through difficult harvest

Les Grands Chais de France’s Bordeaux “negociant” arm – Crus et Domaines de France – has found its investments in property and consultancy has helped it through a “difficult 2013 harvest”.

Chateau CantinGCF owns and operates 400 hectares of vineyards in Bordeaux, including 12 châteaux and has been working with world renowned consultant Michel Rolland’s team on the four properties that it fully owns. These are Château Cantin, Saint Emilion Grand Cru; Château Faizeau, Montagne, Saint Emilion; Château Lestage Simon, Cru Bourgeois, Haut Medoc and Clos Beauregard, Pomerol.

GCF told db that by working with consultants the vineyards have been better prepared for this year’s tough harvest and they have been able to introduce a range of solutions that have helped to improve the condition of the vineyards.

These include making sure the grapes have more exposure to the sun, that there is good circulation and training the vines so that the fruit is not surrounded by too much foliage.

Jean Marc Dulong, Crus et Domaines de France’s development director, said: “Consultants help to accelerate the increase in quality of the wines produced. They bring an outsiders’ view and a diversity of experience to an estate.

“They work closely with our own winemakers, regularly visiting the vineyards from August until the harvest, and provide us with a background of information that informs the decisions we will ultimately make in terms of harvesting date, winemaking and especially blending which is a particular expertise of Michel Rolland. In a difficult vintage such as 2013, our long term investment has paid off in ensuring all grapes were picked in optimal conditions.”

With the late flowering that was caused by a this year’s bad spring LGCF has experienced its latest harvest for 30 years, but the company told db the grapes needed the extra maturity on the vines. LGCF added that because the winemakers have worked closely with the consultants they have been able to formulate positive solutions to the problems that have arisen during the difficult harvest.

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