The grapes were hand-picked into small boxes of 25 pounds and generally de-stemmed. Fermentation began with indigenous yeast and was conducted in the classical method of punching down the cap and pumping over the juice. As is customary, the wine was aged in barrels sent from Joseph Drouhin's inventory. New oak content was restricted to less than 20% so as not to hide the wine's true character. Malolactic fermentation was completed naturally in barrels without inoculation.
July and August were rather cool, ripening was slow until the beginning of September. The last three weeks of September were superb. The grapes were harvested between September 30th and October 16th. The first fermenters were filled with ripe grapes in good balance with acidity. The last part of the crop was lower in acid but still in very healthy condition.
Lovely colour. The texture is rich and silky, the wine generous and complex. Harmonious and balanced, it should develop well over the next five or six years, maybe more! This wine was made from a careful selection of grapes, all grown on the Estate. We select those most suitable for long-term aging. It should be noted here that such a small bottling allows the quality of DDO to remain unchanged. The production of Laurene 1996 is limited to 2,000 cases.