This autumn we were able to acquire a 2.3 hectare plot in the northeast of Bergen.
This piece of farmland with hard grass has been used to spread manure and harvest hay for years.
A compact, but very fertile soil, full of nitrogen and minerals.
It is up to us to transform this agricultural monoculture
towards an oasis of biodiversity and a rich and active soil life,
where birds, bees and other insects will find their place.
September was still a warm sunny month. From Thursday 1 October it would rain for a long time and we could no longer work on the land.
Monday and Tuesday it was still dry, with the occasional little sun, Wednesday the threat of the first rain came up.
The long grass had already been mowed and removed from the land the week before.
On Monday the ditches were cleaned for the Schouw, on Tuesday extra ditches and pipes were installed for better drainage on the plot. At the same time, we plowed the land, leveled the ground and made it airy.
On Tuesday and Wednesday, 500 tons of organic green compost arrived, which is 20 trucks full. Extra carbon has been added to the compost to boost the development of soil life and fungi.
A lot of hard work has been done in the past three days. We had to turn the soil upside down.
Now it is raining. Fortunately, everything was ready on time, because now we can do nothing more on the wet land.
We sowed a biodiversity of clovers, butterfly flowers and herbs in the still warm soil.
In the coming years we want to transform the poor soil from a monoculture of grass and hay land into a new rich forest soil structure.
So now we let the soil rest so that the soil life can restore itself in the right way so that we can start planting our vines in 6 months.
You walk on your own vineyard
You inspect your vines
A chat with the vintner
about the ripeness of the grapes and the expected quality of the harvest this year
With our crowdfunding campaign on CrowdAboutNow, we recruited our first members this summer and secured all necessary funding for our modern, organic vineyard.
A new approach: it will be a members-only vineyard. All members have one or more personal vines on the domain. We financed the first 381 vines through crowdfunding. A fantastic group of people put their trust in us. While there was still nothing at all. In fact, most of these first members (our VIP members) paid even for the coming five years in advance.
Because of this members-only model, there is financial security for the long term. Therefor the vintner can fully focus on the sustainability of the vineyard and the quality of the organic wine.
Sunday afternoon March 15
Lunch at L’invité on the Bloemgracht
My oldest daughter calls:
“Have you heard, Dad?”
“All horeca must close, from 6 o’clock tonight”
Like many great ideas, this plan also arose during the lockdown.
As a gastronome-sommelier, Sico de Moel is specialized in local Dutch wines at Restaurant L’invité in recent years. There is a good network among many Dutch winegrowers. Every day we surprise our guests with the quality of Dutch viticulture.
During the first lockdown, we refurbished and painted the restaurant and offered @home menus for our regular guests.
But there was also time to be able to plant the first vines on our domain in Bergen: 130 vines, 4 modern resistant grape varieties.
Johanitter, Souvignier gris, Solaris and Cabernet Cortis
Wouldn’t it be great to develop a modern Wine Estate together with our dear guests?