Harvest begins in the Rhône

The 2018 harvest has begun in the Rhône and this year, in a rare turn of events, it was the northern appellations that began first.

Picking of white varieties began in the southern Rhône appellations on Monday this week (3 September) but the intense heat of the season had prompted wineries in the northern half of the valley to begin picking their white grapes the week before.

As with much of the rest of France, a long, hot, dry summer has led to an extremely healthy crop.

Françoise Dijon, manager of the vineyard’s Quality Monitoring Centre, said: “The spring weather posed a number of challenges for growers in certain areas, but everything was back on track by the beginning of July. Weather in the first half of August was particularly favourable, with a significant amount of rainfall to refresh the vineyards and help the berries swell.”

Having begun picking the whites in late August, the red harvest is gradually beginning in the northern AOCs, perhaps a week earlier than ‘normal’.

Spring conditions were very warm and followed by a heatwave in June which led to very early ripening but the crop is predicted to be much bigger than 2017.

In the southern AOCs spring was marked by some rainfall and some very localised hailstorms.

A “sizeable portion” of the appellations were hit by downy mildew which has been a minor problem in a few areas this year but prompt treatment and the onset of a dry summer largely controlled the problem and yields are not unduly affected.

Rains in August were a welcome relief for both vines and people following temperatures well above the seasonal norm.

 

Leave your reply

Most Recent Stories

Wine List Confidential: Veraz at The Barcelona EDITION

Douglas Blyde heads to The Barcelona EDITION hotel to give Veraz a visit. Instead of finding a culinary homage to Catalonia, he discovers a series of "challenging" dishes that put him in mind of the works of Picasso.

Planning permission denied for Russell Brand pub conversion

Comedian Russell Brand's planning application to convert an historic Oxfordshire pub into a podcast recording studio has been rejected.

The Drinks Trust calls on the trade for its annual industry survey

The Drinks Trust has launched its fourth annual industry survey aimed at better understanding the drinks and hospitality industry.

Wine List Confidential: Pollini at Ladbroke Hall

Douglas Blyde finds a "chic setting and elegant crowd" at newly-opened Italian eatery Pollini, located in Notting Hill arts centre Ladbroke Hall – but is there substance behind the style?

Twickenham trials no-alcohol zones

Twickenham Stadium is trialling alcohol-free zones during the Six Nations in a bid to tackle excessive drinking, though some rugby fans have already described the policy as a "disaster".

Most Recent Stories

Wine List Confidential: Veraz at The Barcelona EDITION

Douglas Blyde heads to The Barcelona EDITION hotel to give Veraz a visit. Instead of finding a culinary homage to Catalonia, he discovers a series of "challenging" dishes that put him in mind of the works of Picasso.

Planning permission denied for Russell Brand pub conversion

Comedian Russell Brand's planning application to convert an historic Oxfordshire pub into a podcast recording studio has been rejected.

The Drinks Trust calls on the trade for its annual industry survey

The Drinks Trust has launched its fourth annual industry survey aimed at better understanding the drinks and hospitality industry.

Wine List Confidential: Pollini at Ladbroke Hall

Douglas Blyde finds a "chic setting and elegant crowd" at newly-opened Italian eatery Pollini, located in Notting Hill arts centre Ladbroke Hall – but is there substance behind the style?

Twickenham trials no-alcohol zones

Twickenham Stadium is trialling alcohol-free zones during the Six Nations in a bid to tackle excessive drinking, though some rugby fans have already described the policy as a "disaster".