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1997: Le Prix du Champagne Lanson Noble Cuvée Award for investigations into Champagne for the Millennium investment scams

2001: Le Prix Champagne Lanson Ivory Award for

2011: Vindic d'Or MMXI – 'Meilleur blog anti-1855'

2011: Robert M. Parker, Jnr: ‘This blogger...’:

2012: Born Digital Wine Awards: No Pay No Jay – best investigative wine story

2012: International Wine Challenge – Personality of the Year Award

Thursday, 21 May 2009

Photos from a visit to Le Clos Cristal (Saumur-Champigny) in June 2006

Sign@Le Clos Cristal

10-hectare Le Clos Cristal is one of two vineyards designed and built by Le Père Cristal at the turn of the 20th century. Antoine Cristal built walls in his vineyards, which had holes in them. This allowed him to plant the vines in the shade and then to trained the vine through the hole, so that the rest of the plant and its grapes were in the sunshine and also benefited from the radiator effect of the sun’s heat stored and given out by the wall.

Above and below: vine roots in the shade

Rest of the vines facing the sun

Geese and a hen@Le Clos Cristal

Le Clos Cristal was planted with Cabernet Franc and only some of the vines are trained through walls, the rest of the vineyard is planted normally. However, in the Clos des Murs at Parnay (part of the Château de Parnay) all the vines are trained through the walls. This is a much small vineyard and is planted with Chenin Blanc.

Old bottles in the cellar@Le Clos Cristal

Sign@the Clos des Murs, Parnay

As far as I know nobody else took Cristal's example and planted walls in a vineyard for although it works – I have tasted several impressive vintages of the cuvée Clos des Murs from Le Clos Cristal – it must be a very expensive way of growing vines. There are some three kilometres of wall in the Clos Cristal.

More details on Antoine Cristal:

Also Le Clos Cristal

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