Weather conditions this year have been particularly favourable for the vine’s growth cycle and the grapes’ ripening process.
The months of July and August saw high temperatures and a generous amount of sunshine. This ﬁne weather continued into September, with an alternation between cool nights and warm daytime temperatures, which encouraged a concentration of aromas and an increase in anthocyanins (pigments). The grapes ripened ideally and harvests dates are now being staggered. Crops being gathered are perfectly healthy. It is too early to make an estimate about harvest volume.We should keep in mind that hailstorms during the month of March caused signiﬁcant damage to 19 000 hectares of vines (15% of the total Bordeauxwinegrowing region). The extent of this damage varied considerably from one plot to another in vineyards, but the result is a decrease in production.
Dry white wines
Harvests of white Sauvignon grapes begun on 27th August in the earliest-ripening areas. In September harvesting of this variety became widespread and continued afterwards with the Sémillon variety.
Merlot grapes are currently being picked. Harvests of this variety begun in mid-September for the earliestripening areas. The berries are intensely aromatic, full of ﬂ avour, showing excellent concentration in sugar; the pips are crunchy and the skins appear to have marvellous colour potential (anthocyanan evels are high). Acidity levels are low; this is an indication of excellent ripeness.Harvests will continue with Cabernet Franc in the ﬁrst days of October, followed by Cabernet Sauvignon, depending on the earliness of certain terroirs and how ripeness has developed.
Sweet white wines
CIVB A. Benoit
Gathered by successive stages of manual sorting on the vine, harvests of grapes for sweet white wines have barely begun. Weather conditions at present are ideal for these grapes that undergo the inﬂ uence of an extremely speciﬁ c micro-climate. Humidity, in the form of early-morning mists, encourages the work of the botrytis cinerea fungus (noble rot), a vital factor for producing these wines. Very warm daytime temperatures dry out the grapes and concentrate all their ﬂ avours. The grapes express remarkable aromatic potential.