Text & Images: Brinda Bourhis
Both wine producers and pickers were thrilled to kick-off the 2014 harvests early September in the Pessac Leognan area including the Cru Classé Graves Whites, since the weather conditions were ideal. The Indian summer will mark this year’s vintage for whites, much awaited for after a rather unstable summer in July and August.
Among the Cru Classé Graves Whites, Chateau Couhins-Lurton was one of the first to pick on 3rd September. Vincent Cruège, Technical Director at Vignobles André Lurton reported “the first results show good maturity, acidity and a minimal potential degree of 12°. We have 80 pickers this year for our various estates who will all work meticulously so as to bring in the best grapes into the cellar”
They day after, it was Chateau Carbonnieux’s turn, with the first Sauvignon Blancs picked. Eric Perrin, owner of the estate and President of the Cru Classé Graves association commented “We are very glad about the quality of this vintage : the cold summer preserved the acidity of the wine and the warmth and sunshine of late August and early September ensured a high level of sugar. So actually the balance between the freshness (5.8 AT) and alcohol (12.8°) are the sign of an outstanding white vintage . We expect to start picking the reds at the end of next week, with the merlots .”
Jean-Jacques Bonnie of Château Malartic Lagravière seems also reassured and glad that the recent climate conditions have been a great help for the last stages of ripeness for this whites. “With the warm weather since end-August, the grapes have ripened quickly giving aromatic musts supported by a good acidity, just the balance we are looking for in our whites! “
More harvest reports to come direct from Bordeaux in the next few days…