Biodynamic Methods at Maris
Biodynamic Methods at Château Maris
At Maris we put the principles of biodyamics into practice in a number of ways. We work hard to find simple solutions that are simultaneously good for the grapes and good for the environment.
We place a strong emphasis on the naturally occurring lunar and solar cycles and are guided by them to identify the best times for tasks such as ground preparation, sowing, cultivating and, ultimately, grape harvesting.
As fertilizer we use compost made from local cow and sheep manure plus manure provided by the horses which we used to plough some of the plots. The organic compost is supplemented by crops of barley, bulgur and mustard that are grown between rows and ploughed into the soil in order to avoid the adverse effects of monoculture.
Yields are 32 Hl/Ha on average and the entire estate is hand harvested. The grapes, must and wine are moved around by gravity alone, meaning that every aspect of the winemaking is handled gently, allowing us to retain the inherent quality of the grapes.
Energy and the elements are important parts of wine growing. We collect rainfall and recycle used water.
For pest control, we apply infusions of nettles, chamomile, lavender, other plants and minerals as deterrents.
Even the building in which we make our wines is a “living, breathing cellar” that conforms to the principles of biodynamics.
Inside it, the wine is made using only natural yeasts found in the vineyard and bottled un-fined, un-filtered. The oxidation is limited as much as possible by keeping the wines with CO2 at constantly low temperature. Racking of the wine is kept to a minimum.
We are learning all the time how to perfect our methods and adapt them to the land.
It is hard work but we think it is worth it. Organic wines taste significantly superior to ‘conventionally made’ wines and biodynamic methods preserve the natural environment for future generations.