Monday, October 15, 2012

Harvest 2012 - the best one yet!

The 2012 Jones harvest is definitely and without a shadow of a doubt the best one yet!  It started on the 29th August with the first bunch of Muscat harvested in Maury and finished on the 8th of October with the last bunch of Carignan harvested in my little Fitou vineyard in Tuchan.  The quality is looking excellent but that is not why this harvest has been the best one yet.

It didn't start off on the right foot!  A week before we were due to start the couple I had been relying on to help over the 6 weeks very kindly let me know that they had in fact changed their minds.  Catastrophe!!!

That very afternoon I posted a small message on my facebook page and did a little tweet that we had been let down at the last moment and should anyone be interested in helping out to get in contact.  And this is where the power of social media really hits home.  Within 10 minutes I had received over 30 offers of help and they just kept coming.

And that is what made this vintage so special - we didn't just take on 2 people for the harvest but over the 6 weeks we had 10 very enthusiastic people who were prepared to come and join us at the drop of a hat (plus over 40 people who popped in to say hello).  And these people just wanted to get out there and help.  Nina called it a 'boot camp for wine lovers' and that is the best way to sum up.  The harvesting is exhausting, back breaking work, putting the grapes into the vats is not what most people want to do after a days picking. With early mornings and late nights at the end of the harvest you are totally exhausted but we had fun, we had a laugh and that is what will make Domaine Jones 2012 great.

So I would like to thank everyone who retweeted my cry for help and especially to those who made it down to help us out.  The hardcore stayed for 6 weeks, others could only manage to get a couple of weeks off work but all enjoyed the Jones harvest experience.  Over the harvest we had more than 40 people who came to say hello from all corners of Europe and when you are based in the middle of nowhere like Domaine Jones is it is a heart warming experience.  Here are a couple of photos of the harvest and should you be interested we are hoping to do the same next year !!
Early mornings

Late nights up a ladder
Cleaning vats from the inside

Part of the dream team

'Oo I could crush a grape'