“A harvest like the one we have just completed makes us even more aware, if that were necessary, of the importance of gambling – and luck – in the success or failure of a vintage.”
A detailed vintage report (via Jancisrobinson.com) from Aubert de Villaine (co-owner and director of Domaine Romanée Conti the 4.5 acre vineyard of some of the world’s most expensive wines) which highlights the quick-footedness necessary this year to react quickly to the weather in order to produce quality grapes. The weather enabled grapes to be left longer to iripen as there was little risk of botrytis. Note that harvest was around 21 September (a good week or so before the earliest in Bordeaux). Mildew, as in Bordeaux was a problem in 2012.
Aubert de Villaine “Some vintages have an easy birth: the winemaker intervenes calmly and infrequently, like the crew of a sailing boat in calm weather. But it is not uncommon for the journey towards the birth of a vintage to be more like a war, a struggle at all times to keep the boat afloat and reach the goal without too much damage! ….
This was the case in 2012, …. which will long be remembered by those who were fighting on the front line against nature’s best ‘soldiers ….
….Crop losses due to consecutive attacks of downy mildew and sunburn on some bunches were certainly significant, but this reduction in quantity also contributed to quality since it led to a natural thinning which reduced the yield and allowed the healthy grapes to ripen better.
“‘A harvest like the one we have just completed makes us even more aware, if that were necessary, of the importance of gambling – and luck – in the success or failure of a vintage.”
- Corton: 21 September
- Romanée-Conti: 22 September
- Grands Échezeaux: 22, 24 and 25 September
- La Tâche: 25 and 27 September
- Richebourg: 27 and 28 September
- Montrachet: 28 September
- Romanée-St-Vivant: 28 and 29 September
- Échezeaux: 29 and 30 September
Three reasons why the prices will be high
My journalist friend Sophie Kevany writing on the 2012 vintage in Burgundy for the Winesearcher Magazine, reports that despite the various rumours of a difficult vintage in terms of climate and quantity, producers and the BIVB are happy with the fruity wines with soft tannins produced this year.