by Julien Pinon, November 19th 2018.
It is an amazing year, a crazy vintage!
In our estate, the grapes were really great and we have yields of 53 hectoliters per hectare, which is a lot for us. We are very happy. We began the 17th of September, two weeks earlier than usual. Harvest lasted almost four weeks, with one late harvest on October 25th.
Normally we make 3 passes of the grapes: one in the parcel by the pickers, one over a sorting table and a last one before the press on a conveyor belt. This year everything was so good we used everything.
The wines are going to have a lot of residual sugar but won't have a lot of acidity because of the draught. For now, the fermentations are good. This year, we made all our cuvées (sec, demi-sec, moelleux, sparkling) and with good quantities.
The whole country has known a great September and lots of winemakers are very happy. In Vouvray -after five years of climactic disasters- the harvest is terrific. The grapes were very good, very ripe and very healthy; no bad mold at all. The were also a lot of grapes, so great quality and quantity.
In the Loire valley, the Spring was very rainy, with a lot of mildew. Because of this, we have lost about 15 % of the harvest. Fortunately, the summer was beautiful. In September, the wind has turned East, which is like miracle. Normally the wind comes from the West (the ocean) and carries humidity. But with the eastern wind from the continent, the air is dry. Therefore there was no mold, no botrytis but a lot of shrivelled grapes (passerillage), which is rarer here.
A lot of old winemakers say that the 2018 should be at the same level as the 1989...