Just yesterday, we bottled all of our 2009s. In total, we produced just over 2700 bottles. The use of marbles pushed into our projected yields, however we are very pleased with the final results and will happily continue with their use in the future. After a rough start, things got running quite smoothly. At the end of the day, I was left alone to place all the bottles into the cave below our house. Thankfully, a friend, Mark Freeman (from Sonoma, studying in Dijon – helped during harvest 2010 as well), offered to come by and lend a hand.
To bring the wines into the cave, we brought the cages close to the cave entrance (each cage held 612 bottles) I placed the 24 full bottles into a fruit case prior to being hand carried into the cave, with 2700 bottles total works out to about 112 trips throughout the night. It seemed endless at times, but it helped to see that we were making big dents in the work that needed to be done with each trip into the cave.
Mark did an excellent job stacking bottles into the many alcoves and brought down a nice share of bottles as well. He did an amazing job doing something that I was having a tough time with. Having everything stacked was a time for being overwhelmingly relieved to be sure.
We finished just after 4:30a, the only casualty was 1 bottle Morey 1er Crus which broke during one of the bottle pyramid tumbles thanks to my lack of stacking skills. Another bottle of Morey cracked and broke off at the neck, but we enjoyed it drinking past the broken glass. 😉 With the 2009s safe and back in the cave, I can go about packing the cases with leisure.
Thanks again, Mark.