Aleth Girardin is a very talented winemaker from the village of Pommard, just south of Beaune. She has led Le Domaine Aleth Girardin for years and also gave it its reputation. The estate produces Pommard Charmots 1er Cru, Pommard Epenots 1er Cru and Pommard Rugiens-Bas 1er Cru, among others. Her estate totals seven hectares, and most of her vineyards are what we call vielles vignes (old vine), which means vines are decades old and their yields much smaller—making the harvest even harder!
Aleth wants to keep the tradition of the harvest in Burgundy alive.
Every year Aleth is one of the first in Pommard to start harvesting. The harvest team comes mostly from her own family, but also from friends who come back every year from Brussels and other regions in France. During the six-day harvest this genial team brings a smile to the vineyards. They work, of course, but along the way they also eat some cold meats accompanied by some delicious aligoté (a white grape used to make dry white wine) and simply sing among the rows!
Aleth likes to have the people she knows and likes around her for this key period of the year. The team always has a great lunch back at the estate’s main house, and the dinner is ready at the end of the day, for when the winery finally will get a little rest.
There are always some Bourgogne Chardonnay or Beaune Village wines somewhere nearby the kitchen to share after a very hard day of work. These intimate, family-oriented touches are slowly disappearing from the larger-scale harvests, but Aleth wants to keep the tradition of the harvest in Burgundy alive.