It seems that bud-burst is barely over and already the team is in to thin the shoots so that the vines can easily ripen fewer grapes and thus produce better more complex and flavoursome wine.
In this shot one of our workers is attending to a section of the Pinot Noir known as “Clone Abel”. There are various amusing stories about the origin of the name “Abel”. The Wandering Palate website, explains thus: “Abel refers to Malcolm Abel, the diligent New Zealand customs officer who discovered and confiscated the said vine cuttings when a certain individual attempted to illegally smuggle them in to the country. As it turned out, Abel had more than a passing interest in vines, being a vineyard owner and instead of destroying the cuttings he quietly processed them through the correct channels and quarantine facilities.”
Apparently the cuttings had been taken from the famous Domaine de la Romanee Conti vineyard in Burgundy.