Viticulture/Oenology
The secret codes of the barrel room
The secret codes of the barrel room
In the dim and cool chai... the barrels rest quietly in a monastic atmosphere.  The soul of the wine slumbers here.  Lined up in the shadows and the cool constant temperature of 16°C, these barrels will hold the newborn vintage for quite some time, anywhere from 18 to 21 months.  As...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 15/12/2014
Vintage 2014, first impression
Vintage 2014, first impression
On Tuesday, October 14, the last day of harvest for the 2014 vintage took place under a radiant sun.  This last day was the symbol of a miraculous month of September and first two weeks of October.Taking a look back...Everything had started off on the right foot:  winter, with decent...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 23/10/2014
Carefully working the soil
Carefully working the soil
Being a winegrower means learning how to live in harmony with nature, to observe it closely every day, and to help the vines to maintain an equilibrium with their environment...Vineyard workers at Palmer plough the soil all year long in order to look after it, keep it healthy, and improve its...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 25/07/2014
Palmer: Three Ages of Wine
Palmer: Three Ages of Wine
The En Primeur period of early April seems already part of the distant past.  Meeting more than 1000 professionals, from 43 different countries, gave us the opportunity to present our newest baby: the 2013 vintage.  During these tasting sessions, our visitors also noticed the earliest...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 23/06/2014
Assemblage, that magical word...
Assemblage, that magical word...
Assemblage is a magical word that describes the action of uniting and reuniting different elements in order to polish a work of art.  Initially, in the world of wine, producers resorted to blending their wines in order to diminish the consequences of difficult weather conditions.  Today...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 18/03/2014
Winter, the challenge of pruning
Winter, the challenge of pruning
As every year, from November to March, the vine enters a period of winter rest that coincides with the season for pruning. Our vineyard teams have already begun to prepare for the 2014 vintage. The vine is a creeper that tries to stretch itself towards the light, while producing quite a...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 15/02/2014
A harvest insight
A harvest insight
Understanding Palmer without actually picking the grapes.. harvest is both an outcome and a birth. An outcome, as it is the result of the effort of the vineyard worker, and the end of a cycle. As the seasons go by, the workers have guided and controlled the development of the vine with one...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 18/10/2013
Controlling the 2013 barrels with our hands and our eyes
Controlling the 2013 barrels with our hands and our eyes
The winery team is currently receiving the shipment of new barrels from the various coopers that supply us.  After a detailed quality control check, barrel-by-barrel, they will be used to age and sublime the 2013 vintage once past the initial winemaking process.The exteriorWhile observing the...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 26/09/2013
Petit Verdot, the final touch in the blend
Petit Verdot, the final touch in the blend
The vineyard of Château Palmer is planted with equal parts of Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon (respectively 47%), the rest features Petit Verdot planted at 6%.  If Merlot and Cabernet are the pillars of Château Palmer, Petit Verdot is the keystone in the unique blend, reflecting both the style...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 10/09/2013
The Hands of Palmer - Ludovic
The Hands of Palmer - Ludovic
Ludovic Perez - Winery team leader.In the «harvest portraits» of the 2012 vintage, we met the determined and attentive Ludovic, 36 years old, our early bird in charge of wine making. The son of a wine grower in Libourne, Ludovic grew up in his parents' vineyard and participated, at a young age,...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 25/07/2013
2013, a long-awaited summer
2013, a long-awaited summer
These past few days of high temperatures let us believe that summer has finally come to Château Palmer's vineyard.More than a desire for sunshine, the warm weather is a necessity for the vegetative cycle of the vine, disturbed by an atrocious spring. Early May, the vine was dressed for optimal...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 11/07/2013
Nothing lost, nothing created, everything transformed
Nothing lost, nothing created, everything transformed
What better occasion than the week of sustainable development, from April 1st to 7th, to reveal the elaboration of our Made in Château Palmer compost.  For two years now, we have been grinding the cuttings that our vineyard workers leave between the rows of vines.  A tractor then passes...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 05/04/2013
2012 Interns: A quintet of skills
2012 Interns: A quintet of skills
Every year, the Château traditionally welcomes interns to prepare for and monitor harvest and vinification. It is an exchange as beneficial for the interns as for the Estate. The internship allows these future professionals to discover or improve techniques that will help them in their future...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 18/01/2013
First impressions of the 2012 vintage at Château Palmer
First impressions of the 2012 vintage at Château Palmer
The highlights of a cycle
.The 2012 vintage is characterized by a singular contrast between spring, summer and the beginning of fall.  The month of April, particularly cool and damp, led to a late and heterogeneous bud bloom.  This was followed by late flowering, in less-than favorable...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 21/11/2012
Harvest portraits
Harvest portraits
Relive 2012 harvest throughout portraits of the men and women of Palmer, illustrating the different areas of expertise necessary to completing harvest:Charles, The art of picking. Charles is one of our 70 harvesters who arrived yesterday from the North of Danemark. Once the usual advices...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 05/11/2012
Thomas, keeping watch, on the tannins.
Thomas, keeping watch, on the tannins.
As CEO, Thomas makes a point of tasting, every morning, the samples taken from each tank.It is a unique experience to participate. Thomas understands the characteristics of each sample according to its plot of origin."Plot 11? It's never been this good!" he exclaims while tasting one of our oldest...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 21/10/2012
 Harvest 2012, ready !
Harvest 2012, ready !
For the past two weeks, Sabrina Pernet and Thomas Duroux have been keeping a close eye on grapes maturity (see Maturity: The challege of the 2012 vintage)September is at its end, with a succession of beautiful days followed by cool nights. Our grapes finally reached the expected maturity after this...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 28/09/2012
Maturity: The challenge of the 2012 vintage
Maturity: The challenge of the 2012 vintage
Sabrina Pernet, our Technical Director, accompanied by Thomas Duroux, has been performing a morning ritual for the past few days: walking through the entire vineyard tasting the grapes. Last week, they tasted the first berries on the Merlot parcels well known for ripening early, in order to judge...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 19/09/2012
The Hands of Palmer - Katia FONTAYNE
The Hands of Palmer - Katia FONTAYNE
Katia FONTAYNE - Overseer, vineyard workerWith her natural and sincere smile, Katia has spent almost half of her 47 years dedicated to working in the vineyard.  She oversees today the female team of vineyard workers at Palmer and paces their activity throughout the year.Originally a cook,...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 22/08/2012
"Good things comes to those who wait."
"Good things comes to those who wait." We all hope this adage will illustrate this 2012 becoming vintage. We have reached the half veraison today. An important step that gives a first indication on the harvest date. We don't expect it before the end of September, probably beginning of October.
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 10/08/2012
"Veraison" at its premises
Veraison just started on our Merlot plots located on the plateau, around the Château. Thanks to this week-end, berries are turning from green to dark red. This process will last for approximately 15 days. Fruit acidity in berries will decrease while sugar levels will increase. Polyphenols and...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 24/07/2012
 Oak accompanies the wines throughout their ageing
Oak accompanies the wines throughout their ageing
At Château Palmer, every vintage is entirely matured in oak barrels. Depending on the year, 50-60% new barrels are used for Château Palmer and 30% for Alter Ego. All other barrels have been used for one previous vintage. Like parents raising a child, barrels help to point the wine in the right...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 11/07/2012
First summer days - Raising the wires, removing secondary shoots
First summer days - Raising the wires, removing secondary shoots
After spending the second half of the month of May thinning out the vine, our vineyard workers continue to prepare and structure the vineyard before summer begins.We have just finished with the first levage (raising the wires).  This consists of raising the support wire to better accompany the...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 14/06/2012
Spring work in the vineyard - Desuckering the vine
Spring work in the vineyard - Desuckering the vine
It's now time to begin desuckering the vine.  Done early in the growth cycle between bud break and flowering, desuckering is quite simply the act of thinning out the vine cordon (the stalks or shoots on the stump) from the vine stock to better control its vigor and microclimate.  This...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 24/05/2012
Racking by candlelight
Racking by candlelight
This week, and over the next month, we will be racking the 2010 vintage.  This stage comes about two months after fining (see our article Fining: in search of the ideal dosage).This consists of moving clear wine off the heavier sediment that, with the help of the egg whites, has fallen to the...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 25/04/2012
Winery tools - The
Winery tools - The "asse"
The "asse" (French Medoc word) is without a doubt a kind of Swiss knife for the winery craftsman.  Also referred to as the 'Cellar Master's Hammer', this tool is used every day as the vintage is ageing.Its three extremities are each used for different tasks on the barrel.The flat part of the...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 19/04/2012
Winery tools - The whisk
Winery tools - The whisk
Our team in the winery uses a whisk during the fining process to mix in the egg whites.  In order to understand the interest of collage in the process of clarifying the wine, we invite you to read our blog post Fining: in search of the ideal dosage.Once the egg whites are added to the barrel,...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 27/02/2012
Fining : in search of the ideal dosage
Fining : in search of the ideal dosage
At Château Palmer, fining is a simple and measured gesture in which egg whites are added during barrel ageing.  Contained in egg whites, albumin is a protein that, when added to wine, adheres to the suspended particles and causes them to settle.   This stage occurs during the wine...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 24/02/2012
Winter work in the vineyard, between technique and tradition:
There's no rest for our vineyard workers who, as soon as harvest had finished and the first cold days arrived, started the autumn and winter work on Château Palmer's 55 hectares of vineyards. Their tasks are carried out with great care but always in the interest of efficiency so that everything...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 02/02/2012
Blending notes, 2011 vintage:
Between December and February reigns over the technical team of Château Palmer a studious atmosphere conducive to making an exceptional vintage.  The tasting sessions to prepare the final blend take place during this period.Magical moments, with measured gestures and refined palates, which...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 16/01/2012
First impressions on the 2011 vintage.
The lowest yields since 1961.The 2011 harvest is marked by a limited production. Going back through our archives we found that it was the lowest yield since the mythical 1961 vintage (11.8 hL/ha versus 20hL/ha for 2011). A meticulous vintage.The extra time dedicated to sorting the grapes...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 09/11/2011
Palmer 2011: How this vintage benefitted from an experienced team and technology.
In harvesting this 2011 vintage, we focused on selecting only the best of what the vine gave us.  This year the hailstorm of June 4th, followed by the high temperatures of early summer, resulted in a heterogeneous yield. For this year's harvest, we chose to use Optical Eye Sorting to help us...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 02/11/2011
Harvest 2011 - September 20th update

The first week of harvest was sunny and warm, which allowed our Belgian and Danish students to spend their weekend discovering the beaches of the Atlantic coast. This two-day break allowed the last Merlot grapes to round out; some berries needed a little more time to soften the structure of...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 20/09/2011
Summer time!
During the months of April and May, the sun was truly the star of the show, occupying center stage.  Not one drop of water for more than 60 consecutive days!  According to Météo France, this was the driest spring for more than a century, and the hottest in 50...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 23/06/2011
The flowering is going beautifully
What delicious aromas - for the past several days, the vines are giving off the most refined, subtle, and attractive perfume!After a trying winter, the first buds appeared a few weeks ago and we are delighted to welcome these ephemeral blossoms and their complex bouquet.The vines are flowering, and...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 16/05/2011
Moth mating disruption
Their names are Lobesia botrana and Eupoecilia ambiguella.They may sound like pretty flowers... but they are actually nasty pests! These moths produce caterpillars, also known as "grape worms", which do a great deal of damage in the vines. They burrow into the ripening grapes, perforating the skins...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 21/04/2011
Prune early, prune late
In the heart of winter, our vineyard workers brave the cold and rainy weather -- conditions that are harsh and trying to say the least -- to maintain and prepare our vines so that they will be ready to begin their next growth cycle in the spring.  It's already time to prepare for the 2011...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 08/02/2011
Pumping over, running off, devatting, pressing, funneling...before blending (2/2)
The daily tasting sessions, started on September 23rd with the beginning of harvest, continue this week to analyze the evolution of the last tanks. The tasting team is attentive to the harmony and style of the wine, and takes into consideration how this corresponds to the grape's...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 12/11/2010
Pumping over, running off, devatting, pressing, funneling...before blending (1/2)
Here are some insights into this enigmatic vocabulary, and the winemaking that goes into producing the 2010 vintage. At the end of the 2010 harvest, we had picked 230,829 kilograms of grapes.  The berries were meticulously selected and placed into tanks as they arrived at the...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 08/11/2010
Only a farewell, not an adieu
Our groups of harvesters have now left for their respective countries of origin. For almost three weeks the Château was the meeting point for 110 adolescents, from the ages of 16 to 21.Two groups, two objectives, and one mission: Harvest at Château Palmer.The Danish students are from Holstebro, a...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 21/10/2010
Harvest 2010 - Status report for October 14, 2010



October 14, 2010: Sixteenth day of harvest at Château Palmer, a day dedicated to harvesting our 2 hectares of Petit Verdot.Almost 90% of our parcels have now been harvested.  Only 6 hectares of Cabernet Sauvignon remain, scheduled to be picked early next week.
We are heading...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 15/10/2010
A Grape's Journey, from the Vine to the Tank
After being delicately cut by our harvesters, placed in their crate, then carried back to the Château, the grape bunches are then patiently separated in order to obtain only the perfect berries that will make up the essence of Palmer's wines. This rigorous selection is the result of...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 12/10/2010
A Typical Harvest Day with our Technical Director
What does Sabrina Pernet's day look like during harvest?Without a doubt it's a day that starts early... and finishes late! Harvest is a rich and intense step in making our wines, at it demands a great deal of attention. This is a strategic moment.  The vine has been developing all...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 07/10/2010
2010 Harvest - Status report for October 4th, 2010
Harvest began on September 22nd, when our vineyard workers began picking the replacement vines and the young plants. Early last week, our group of Danish and Belgian students arrived to complete the group. This happy procession of harvesters picked almost all the Merlot parcels. Every morning,...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 05/10/2010
Le Nid Médocain gets divided up
Parcels 37 and 38, more poetically referred to as Le Nid Médocain (Médoc's Nest), were divided up and harvested over time, as a certain number of our other parcels. This method of intra-parcel selection shows our unending desire to improve the quality of our wines. Our three tasters - Thomas...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 01/10/2010
Beginning with the young vines
Last week, our team of vineyard workers got down to harvesting the replacement vines, before the arrival of our 110 student harvesters this week. What are replacement vines? Every year, on our older plots, a few of our vine stocks pass on... young stock are planted in their stead so that the...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 27/09/2010
Behind the Scenes at Harvest
The green light for harvest was given yesterday and we began with the young Merlot vines. After the Primeurs, harvest is the other hectic period of our year. Indeed, professionals and wine lovers around the world are closely following the quality of the grapes, which will determine the quality of...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 24/09/2010
Glory to Glories
Sabrina Pernet and Thomas Duroux, respectively Technical Director and CEO, took their first tour of the Merlot parcels yesterday morning in order to taste the berries and determine their level of ripeness. Tasting showed an important level of potential tannins. This was later confirmed by the...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 16/09/2010
Peak véraison for the 2010 growing season
We have had beautiful, dry, sunny weather since mid-June and, after three rather demanding vintages, are delighted with the very low level of fungal disease. In fact, the last real rainy spell goes back to the 15th and 16th of June, after the Merlot had finished...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 05/08/2010
The clusters are beginning to tighten
After excellent weather in early June, a week of cold and rain in the middle of the month interfered with the end of flowering and the beginning of fruit set. Incomplete fertilisation in some Merlot vines led to millerandage, although it is difficult at this time to evaluate the consequences on the...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 05/07/2010
Fining the 2008 vintage
After being fined last month with egg whites, the 2008 vintage continues to be aged in French oak barrels. Fining is a simple, but delicate process. It is essential to adjust the proportion of egg white used with the wine's structure to respect both the style and balance of the vintage. To...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 02/03/2010
A young team of motivated and enthusiastic interns!
There is a tradition at Palmer that our savoir-faire and experience be shared with students from a wide variety of nationalities. Noé PIERRON, a student in BTS at the CFPPA in Blanquefort, has been an intern here since early October.  He is in charge of the important task of following...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 18/10/2009
Our Petit Verdot
We had barely begun yesterday, and today we're already picking the last clusters! 6% of Palmer's vineyard is planted with petit verdot.  This year, petit verdot grapes have proven difficult to separate from their stems.  The team in the winery stayed late last night to carefully complete their...
Top of pageChâteau Palmer, 09/10/2009
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