Pruning, Training and Tasting: The Latest News From Team La Kav

The La Kav Wines vineyard in Co. Wexford

By Jocelyn Doyle

It’s pruning season! Read on to learn what the team has been up to in the La Kav Wines vineyard…

Progress on our first Wexford wine

The first vintage of our Wexford wine is ready for its second fermentation. We’ve diligently been conducting some early tastings and finding encouraging notes of crisp pear and refreshing melon. The wine has a beautiful pale golden colour, while the first tears of alcohol are visible around the edges of the glass. This week, we raised the temperature in the vat to get this round of fermentation underway. This is called a malolactic fermentation, and it will lower the acidity level and increase the alcohol content. 

“To make any wine in Ireland is a challenge. To make quality wine is a whole other level.” – Arnaud Clopin

Pruning lessons from the experts

Patience is key while we wait for our first-ever wine to come to maturity, but we’re not sitting idle. There’s no rest for the winemaker! The first buds of the year are popping up on our vines and pruning season is underway. This week, we had the pleasure of welcoming our friend, viticultural expert Gaetan Pulfer, to Gorey. Gaetan is in the process of beginning his own wine business at home in Grenoble, France, but took precious time out of his busy schedule to come and share his expertise with us. We count ourselves very lucky to be able to learn from him.

La Kav Wines founder Arnaud Clopin, wine expert Gaetan Pulfer and freelance food writer Jocelyn Doyle tasting the first vintage of Wexford wine
La Kav Wines founder Arnaud Clopin, wine expert Gaetan Pulfer and freelance food content expert Jocelyn Doyle

Over the week, he showed us how to prune our vines. We were in awe of Gaetan’s swift pruning technique; it was so impressive to see the years of practice behind his lightning-fast movements. He also showed us how to train the vines using the cordon (or spur) method. This means encouraging the vine to grow a self-supporting woody trunk, which is trained to grow horizontally along a wire. Training the vines like this is tricky, meticulous work that requires a great deal of attention. It can be easy to damage the precious buds or break a more delicate trunk. 

Gaetan at work pruning our Wexford vines

What’s next for the La Kav Wines vineyard?

After a very wet March, we’re hoping for a sunnier spell that will let the ground in our vineyard dry out a little as our buds grow into vines. We plan to bottle our first vintage in August, leaving the vat empty and ready for our second harvest and pressing in October.

For more updates about our Wexford wine, the ongoing work in our vineyard and upcoming events, follow us on Instagram and LinkedIn. Become a member of the La Kav Wine Gang for free when you order any wine, and get the latest news on WhatsApp every Sunday!

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