“I have never known such a period as we had this year from spring to June,” she says, as we taste some of last year’s wines from barrel, finding it difficult to liken 2011 to any previous vintage. (Some have suggested similarities with 2007.) She reckons the 2011 whites are good and is more concerned with the ripeness in the red grapes, which is, “good, but not perfect.” With the weather forecast decidedly mixed, however, she has decided to pick: “It’s the kind of year where you wish for one more good week.”
Outside, at the grape reception area, they are trialling a new optical sorting machine from Italy, having tried two others last year. But someone is missing – Lionel, a coiffeur from Beaune who always takes his annual holidays to work the harvest at Drouhin. This year’s early harvest caught him out and, such is his work rate, two people have had to replace him.
Véronique Drouhin with one of the four barrels of Petits Monts 2010.
PS If you are thinking of buying some Drouhin 2010s my tips would be the Chambolle-Musigny Les Amoureuses and, from Véronique Drouhin’s own personal vineyard, the Vosne-Romanée Petits Monts. And the Musigny if you have just won the Lotto.