A Rainy Vintage
One needs strong nerves and to never let go in adverse weather conditions.Vintages like these remind the winemkaer, and we sometimes forget it, that they are totally dependent on climate (among other obstacles.)
We knew it and we dreaded it: rain did not cease from the very beginning of the season until harvest time. Vineyard work was difficult, but we needed to try and protect the grapes to lead them to maturity. It was a very frustrating time, which reminded us that we have a wonderful job that requires us to stay humble and to keep in mind that nothing is ever set in stone.
Spring was excessively wet, following a winter that did not want to end. Vegetation started late and accumulated more lateness as time went by, but blooming happened under acceptable conditions.
Summer was quite nice, but diseases were rampant, due to the amount of humidity left by the spring rains. We had to treat relentlessly until the beginning of September. But this window of relative good weather was swept up by more rains from mid-September until harvest.
We had not harvested that late in 30 years! We had to wait for phenolic maturity, for the tannins especially. I don’t know whether we would have taken such risks 30 years ago, but today we believe that it was necessary to wait and pick ripe fruit.
The 2013 wines are a lot less concentrated than previous vintages (dilution due to rain) but they have a great asset: they are easy-going and tasty. They are not for amateurs of rich, structured, long-aging wines, but those who like tender, young wines will love them.