This colorful French container is known as a hotte. The exterior of the metal container has been painted burgundy with a coat of arms on the front face. The heraldic element depicts a 15th century style escutcheon (meaning all edges are canted) emblazoned with a large chateau over a light tincture. An open crown tops the shield, and they are both flanked by two lion supporters. The langued (tongues showing) lions have a rampant regardant attitude, meaning they are standing upright with raised forepaws (rampant) while looking over their shoulder (regardant). This is a realistic representation of the wine label for the Chateau Cos Labory vineyard, located in the Medoc region of France. Red wines from this region belong to the Saint Estephe appellation.
Hottes were used for grape collecting in vineyards all over France during the 19th and 20th centuries. Workers at the vineyard would walk around with the hotte strapped to their back and place the harvested grapes into the container. It is quite rare for a hotte of this age to have its original leather backstraps as ours does. The painted decoration (recent) is a true work of art. It will make for a wonderful accessory in a wine room or kitchen.
CONDITION: Wear commensurate to age and use with light denting to metal. Buildup to the interior and minor loss of paint with rubs to the exterior. The leather back straps are still intact, which is rare for a grape hotte of this age.