Winter works

After the harvest is before the harvest

After many days of very long hours, the 2022 vintage is now in barrels and completing the malolactic fermentation phase. And a somewhat quieter time begins at Chateau Le Pin Beausoleil. Igor Leclere has now started pruning the vines in the cold season, when the plants are entering a recovery phase after the hot summer. Temperatures were around 0°C for a few weeks before rising again. Pruning will now continue for several weeks. It’s hard work, but it also offers peaceful moments of meditation as the plants are carefully prepared for the next season.

Winter pruning is a laborious but very important task, as it determines the number of buds that remain on the vine for the next growing season and the subsequent harvest. As you can see, there is hardly a break when it comes to producing quality wine.


This time of year also allows us to prepare the 2021 vintage for its final phase. The wine is removed from the barrels and transferred to the vats for the final maturation phase. The final product is also assembled at this stage, as the contents of the various barrels are collected in large containers known as vats. Before bottling, the wines are left to rest for several months.

After emptying, the barrels are carefully cleaned under high pressure with warm water so that they can be partially reused in the next season. The barrels from the second year are no longer used and are sold to other wine producers or for other purposes such as decoration or whisky refinement.

“As we work in the production of beverages for human consumption, we have to adhere to certain strict hygiene standards at all stages of wine production. That’s why we are constantly cleaning,” says Igor Leclere. From cleaning the barrels and floors to preparing the next vintage and general maintenance, there is always something to do. Cleaning is not only of the utmost importance for hygienic reasons. It also allows the cellar to be organized to keep up with logistics and planning


Basically, there is no real “slow season” when it comes to winemaking. After the harvest, the pace slows down somewhat, but the work and the consistent care of the wines are a constant occupation.

These winter months also give us time to plan new projects, make important decisions, do more research and continue our training. While the world seems to be operating in a constant crisis mode, from the coronavirus pandemic to the war in Ukraine, regular, forward-thinking work at the winery allows us to keep a slightly different, longer perspective on life: We make high-quality products that can be enjoyed many years later by someone in a country far removed from where they were made.