Fiona’s Blog

  1. 2020 Bordeaux En Primeur
    2020 will always be known as the third year in a great trilogy of vintages 2018-2019-2020 in Bordeaux. Yet the story behind the 2020s is much more interesting than just wonderful quality...
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  2. The Finesse of La Morra
    This is a land of rolling hills; of morning fogs (Nebbiolo takes its name from “Nebbia” the Italian word for fog); of contrasting climates from the icy winds of the snow-capped Alps to the warm influence from the Mediterranean Sea. The soils are rich clay at the bases and limestone on the summits of the hills...
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  3. Indigenous Varieties
    Climate change has affected all areas of agriculture and we notice this especially in viticulture with its attention to detail and its concentration of small parcels of vines in comparison to large prairies of wheat. Throughout the world winemakers have had to battle over the last few years with increased alcohol levels, sunburnt grapes, premature withering of vine leaves and a host of dramatic weather patterns from late frosts, hailstorms and summer droughts brought on by global warming.
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  4. 2020 Harvest Blog part 3: Taking stock of the vintage
    We are just finishing running off the wines into oak barrels and sending the pomace off to the distillery to make hand sanitizer in these Covid times. It is only now, when things are slowing down, that we have time to take stock of this extra-ordinary vintage...
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  5. 2020 Harvest Blog Part 2: Second Week Saga
    It is not meant to happen like this: We are happy when a little gentle rain falls at the beginning of the harvest to temper the sugar and exuberance of the Merlots. We then wait for a classic Bordeaux Indian summer to arrive with the last rays of warm sunshine to finish the ripening of the Cabernets, so important in the wines of the Médoc. But this Covid year, everything is turned on its head: Torrid, dry weather for the ripening of the Merlots and cold, constant downpours while we waited for the Cabernets. It has rather rattled our nerves to say the least.
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  6. 2020 Harvest Blog Part 1: The first days of harvest 2020
    With every vintage comes the expectation that we take past experiences and learn from them. With every vintage comes the inevitable question as to which past harvest we can compare it to. With every vintage comes the nervousness, the anticipation and the feeling that we are starting from zero. Nothing could be nearer the truth for the 2020 vintage. Even after many decades of making wines in Bordeaux, Jacques and I and our family at numerous chateaux scattered across the Right Bank of Bordeaux have not seen anything like the last two weeks.
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