Exclaimed our winemaker, Guy Wagner.
Guy was speaking of the subsidiary bunches that form from the main bunch stem of Pinot Noir, often referred to ‘wings’ or shoulders.
These grapes will always remain behind the primary bunch in ripening and at vintage, even though they will be the right colour, will not achieve full ripeness and therefore will not contribute positively to the finished wine. They have to be removed.
That means that viticulture at Providence as far as Pinot Noir is concerned is now at the bunch level.
Manual and demanding, but not as demanding as vintage at Chateau D’Yqeum in Sauternes where they get down not only to bunch level but berry level! That’s why their wine sells for $400-plus a bottle at release.
This is what we are doing at Providence now – thinning Pinot Noir.