Vine Tending in Beaujolais

This is Jean-Claude. I met him on a recent trip to Beaujolais where I traveled to seek out the great Gamay producers of France (more on that soon). Jean-Claude is a vine tender. I imagine his father and his grandfather might have been too. He smokes cigarettes and drives a little truck through the vineyard. He parks it near him when he works so that he can listen to the radio from the open driver's side door. Every morning, he begins before sunrise. This time of year, he is pruning. It's common knowledge that Jean-Claude is fast, but it still takes him three months to complete the task. I understand what hard labor this is. I can't imagine doing it for months, but respectfully, I envy him.

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