Published on September 14th, 2014 | by Quentin Chirol0
September, the month of harvest
September arrives and with it the season of the harvest in Beaujolais. In this wine region in the north of Lyon we always pick grapes from late August to early September, depending on the weather in previous months. The harvest lasts from a week to fifteen days according to the size of the farm. It is a period that was completely changed the face of Beaujolais, as much more than a seasonal job, it’s a moment of conviviality and celebration shared by more than 10,000 people from all over Europe each year.
The typical day of a harvester is simple: getting up at six in the morning for a collective breakfast hosted by the winemaker then starting in the vineyard for grape picking. Beaujolais is one of the most difficult to harvest because of the small size of vine carrying the grapes, forcing the grape collectors to squat. At nine in the morning, it’s time for a break or “snack.” The winemaker then offers sausage, bread, cheese and a piece of chocolate to his workers, not to mention the wine glass that adorns every meal! After that, the harvesters resume their work until the lunch break. They return to their boss to eat a meal together in a friendly atmosphere, then they continue through the afternoon! In the evening, the different groups can be found in the cooperative wine cellar to party with a bottle of rosé or chill (a kind of bubbly). They drink until suppertime. The evening will continue with the pickers recounting good stories over a glass of Beaujolais.
So, this is the life of a vineyard worker for ten days until the end of the harvest (which we call “the revole”) arrives. The salary is not stupendous (€ sixty per day), the pickers come mostly to share a unique experience in this beautiful region of Beaujolais that will leave a positive impression on them.