2020: an exceptional harvest 2020: an exceptional harvest
HIGHLIGHTS OF LIFE AT THE ESTATE
The year 2020 was a milestone in the history of Château de La Chaize.
By finishing renovations on the ancient winery – classified as a French national heritage building (Monument Historique) – in time for the 2020 harvest, the estate definitively established its determination to be an pioneering model of viticulture in France, notably because of its uncompromising approach to single vineyard management.
A new chapter had begun in the history of the estate, whose HEV-certified 2018 vintage was released that autumn, bearing witness to the estate’s progressive move towards organic viticulture.
FEEDBACK ON THE 2020 HARVEST, A PROMISING VINTAGE...
In all aspects, 2020 was a year like we had never seen before. A mild, sunny spring was followed by a hot, dry summer, creating conditions that boosted the ripening of the grapes, allowing them to reach their full potential faster. As a result, harvesting got underway exceptionally early, beginning on August 24 - a surprise to the growers, who are accustomed to picking their grapes in September.
Boris Gruy, Estate Manager at Château de La Chaize, gave the go-ahead to begin harvesting at the end of August, making 2020 one of the earliest harvests ever!
Over the course of 3 weeks, 90 harvesters handpicked grapes that were at their peak of ripeness and deliciously sweet. In fact, they were so sweet that the sorting table would become extremely sticky during the manual sorting of the grapes that it had to be washed down several times a day in order to function at its optimal potential.
THE HARVEST AT CHATEAU DE LA CHAIZE, A HISTORIC TURNING POINT IN THE ESTATE’S APPROACH TO VITICULTURE
In 2020, more than ever before, Château de La Chaize pursued its approach to organic viticulture that is more anchored in terroir and respect for the environment.
For the previous 3 years in order to fully implement its single vineyard approach, Château de La Chaize completely restored its 108-metre-long (354 feet) vaulted cellar and replaced its 57 barrels.
The 2020 vintage was vinified in new stainless steel and concrete tanks that the entirely renovated historic winery was outfitted with, while the new, 1,200 m2 (12,917 ft2) cellar is now ready to receive the estate's finest bottles, where they will benefit from well-deserved rest and top-quality ageing conditions.
The 2020 vintage represents an impressive mosaic of terroirs, reminding us that this year marked a major turning point in the history of the estate in terms of single vineyard vinifications.