Monday, September 10, 2012

Farmers are Told to Begin Harvest in Alsace, France

On Monday, September 10, harvest began in Alsace, France. (You know that area where I got to speak German because ownership of the strip of land went back and forth between the Germans and French. The French won the last skirmish.) This is the regulated earliest date that harvest can begin for Crémant (translate to bubbly) in Alsace part of France. That Monday morning was like a floodgate opening of workers pouring into certain vineyards. Harvest of grapes for still wines will begin on Sept 24, per regulations.  

Wine history here is ancient. The Alsacian vineyard is one of the oldest ones of France. There were 108 wine-producing villages in 800, 160 in 900 and 430 in 1400. By this time, Alsacian wine, red or white, was one of the most famous wines of Europe and one of the most expensive. Today, prices for wine are more reasonable, but the land is among the most expensive in France.
Near the little village of Eguisheim, Alsace, France, these happy guys are harvesting Pinot noir, destined to become Crémant d'Alsace (which means bubbly).
Just in case you didn't know what the Alsace wine region looks like, here is Husseren les Chateaux (to the best of my non-French ability, that means "Husseren the Chateaus" for the nearby ancient castles.) 

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