Above-normal temperatures and exceptionally low rainfall for several months accelerated ripening and the harvest would have been very early. Weather conditions remained perfectly stable throughout September with cooler nights and conditions favourable for phenolic maturity.
The first white harvests started on 16 August and the first syrah harvests on 21 August, 15 days ahead of 2016 and a record harvest date. The Grenache Noir had a historic coulure (poor fertilisation) which resulted in a small harvest with small bunches, small grapes with thick skins and well-ripened stalks. With reasonable alcohol levels and good acidity, this vintage has some beautiful balances that suggest that they’ll be great for ageing. If the quality is therefore unanimous, the harvest is unusually low.
In general, whether red, white or rosé, the quality is there. The whites and rosés have stand-out floral aromas. The rosés are very aromatic, and some whites reveal citrus aromas.
The reds have very high colour intensities and a great richness of tannins.