Wine Traditions ltd
Our notes for 2021 are unfortunately very negative, but we are trying to be positive.
Difficult vintage- climate conditions affected quantities (70% to 80% loss due to frost around April 5th) the health and maturity of the grapes (just average quality and limited maturity). The wines are similar to vintages that are traditional in character, fruity and fresh (citrus), lighter bodied than previous recent vintages, in the end the vintage for whites is pleasant, for red there is very, very little quantity and quality is to be determined.
In summary for 2021 :
· Spring- frost the 5th and 6th of April (80% of buds frozen) then cold and wet
· Summer- idem, cold and wet
· Harvests- from 15th to 30th September during rain (lots of rain)
· General Notes- for 6 years we have been suffering from changes in the climate, mainly with pinot noir, which is very sensitive to climatic variations (we have lost the equivalent of 3 harvests in 6 years).
Our thoughts on adapting :
· Change our plant material, rootstock resistant to drought, more productive plants (while controlling them by pruning), planting in areas less well exposed, with more soil. Unfortunately our vineyard is quite young and we will not be able to transform everything.
· Continue and develop experiments: plant cover crops to maintain humidity, high trellising, early leaf thining, and above all the preservation and development of soil life, keeping as much biodiversity as possible, etc.
· Keep an open and positive mind !!
The year 2021 marks the return of difficult and unpleasant years! First of all, the Covid crisis was difficult psychologically even if we were not personally affected by the disease.
From a climatic point of view, the year had started normally with an ordinary winter, a slight cold snap on February 11 (-10°C) and a usual bud break around March 30. Then, the April 6 frost destroyed 60% of the potential harvest. As a result, all the work in the vineyard was disrupted because there were two generations of buds: the buds of March 30 and those that appeared at the end of April after the frost.
Many buds did not grow at all, the vegetation was very irregular. In this photo, we see for example an almost completely frozen cane with 4 buds that grew…
Then, nothing special but a lot of mildew and oidium among some winegrowers whose vines were wet (not at the Domaine d’Elise which is on rocks).
On September 15 it rained a lot, bringing rot. We has to rush to harvest despite the grapes being not yet very ripe… We started on September 23… the rot was progressing very very quickly, we had to act quickly, fortunately thanks to the harvesting machine we succeeded. Most of the less frozen area was harvested in 4 days. Unfortunately the overall yield is low: 23 HL/HA instead of 60. Thanks to a very careful monitoring of the settling of the musts, we were able to get rid of any rot in the vats and the fermenting juice turned out to be of good quality. As in all difficult years, if we take good care during the work of vinification, we can achieve a very correct result: the natural degree was 11°/11.4° which is not so bad, thank you global warming, and the juices are tasting good. Bottling is scheduled for July 2023, the wines will be distributed at half the usual quantity…
2021 has been a very unusual year.
We started with very hot weather at the beginning of the year, February and March, followed by a catastrophic frost (-7°), on April 7, 2021, which destroyed 65 to 70% of our 2021 harvest.
The summer then went relatively well with a normal harvest date.
The white wines will be of very high quality and the reds will have lots of fruit, very beautiful Pinot Noir expression, very typical of Burgundy. Our thoughts for the future are that we are in trouble, with the decline of vines due in part to the climate, but not only that; by other problems, the over-prolification of plant materials [bindweeds] among the vines. According to the researchers, for the moment, no one knows the exact causes.
Concerning the 2021 vintage:
It is a rather particular vintage, it started out very dry, and that lasted until the 15th of May. We were affected by spring frost, resulting in a 50% loss of yields.
Between May 15th and August 15th there was frequent heavy rainfall, conditions requiring significant vineyard work.
Notably tending to the health of the vines, but equally tending to plowing the soils, which was difficult, as there were very limited intervention opportunities.
The month that preceeded the harvest was more clement.
Then rain came back the day before the harvest. That gave us uneven maturities, higher acid levels, lower sugar levels than preceding years. Despite these disturbances, during the vinifications we kept to our objective of zero sulfur. The fermentations went smoothly.
In spite of this complicated year, we are very happy with the results. The 2021 vintage will display great freshness, we will now let the élévage take care of itself. We are in our last year of conversion to organic agriculture (AB certification). The property will be certified ECOCERT on August 2nd, 2022.
In 2020 we applied to “BIODYVIN” for Biodynamic Agriculture certification. The conversion will begin with the 2022 vintage.
The 2020 vintage … here are some elements: – the weather was highly contrasted: a rather mild and very rainy winter then suddenly magnificent and dry weather all spring. Record heat on April 10 with 26 °, the buds grew very quickly. There were only two heavy rains between April and August = drought !!! The flowering is complete around May 24, the output of the grapes is magnificent and early: in this perspective a big harvest is scheduled for August 25. Very good weather in June / July / August! But on August 1st it is 40.5 ° … the grapes are burning in the sun and a large part of the harvest is lost (25%). The harvest begins on August 24 in Chablis: it’s a record! My earliest is the 28th. The vines have suffered from drought and there was a continued risk of the grapes becoming overripe and with little acidity. Chablis needs acidity.
In the end, the harvest is average in quantity (50HL/HA) and of very good quality. The degrees are between 12 and 13.5 … that’s a lot! – everything went well, it is certain that climate change is real … Like all the last vintages, the wine will be good. We should not go into the details too much because overall: it is GOOD! We wonder whether we will have years like 1984 again for example: the grapes were completely rotten (rotten/moist) with a natural degree of 7.5 ° !!!! Will it happen again ???????????????
2020 was a very dry and very hot year, therefore these will be wines of character for long aging. Small yeilds this year, but very high quality.
Speaking of the 2020 vintage in Burgundy:
This is an early vintage; we started the harvest on August 26th. A “solar” vintage, with a severe lack of water in July and August. The heat was such that the Pinot Noir bunches suffered from scorching. There was significant loss of production in the bunches, resulting in some dried out grapes at the harvest. These were of course eliminated on the sorting table before entry into the cellar. Yields were low in red but there is a nice concentration in the berries. There is lot of richness in the wines, it will be a “sunny” vintage, but gourmand with a lot of fruit (aromatic of black fruits such as blackcurrant, blackberries, black cherries) For the chardonnay; the vines suffered less from drought and we had a rain storm two and a half weeks before harvest. To our greatest satisfaction; the acid/alcohol balance is very desirable. The whites have a lovely freshness with a lot of purity and exotic fruit … A nice vintage in the cellar.
Harvests were successful in spite of the drought, we obtained our expected quantities.
Very beautiful grapes with excellent maturity.
The wine is already (early January) tasting very well, with good balance, a beautiful vintage awaits you.
After a rainy winter, spring arrived in early April, and temperatures quickly climbed. The start of vegetation was rapid and homogeneous, and the frost did not cause any damage. Growth was then rapid, with very little rainfall throughout the cycle. The marked drought during the ripening of the grapes even caused certain sectors to defoliate onto the stones (Château Gaillard, Champs Ronds), where the burning effect of the sun was the most intense. The first juices from this sunny vintage are very pleasant, the white wines from Maconnais are round and fruity.
The year 2019 = a hot and dry year
Alas, we had a bit of hail at the beginning of April and again in late April.
Then hail beginning of May at which time buds were between 1 and 12 cm.
With this persistant cold the budding out of the vines was slow, through the end of May.
The vines were in full flower around June 17th
Which put the predicted harvest date at September 25th;
Then the heatwave came!
Very hot at the end of June: 38°C, beautiful all of the beginning of July and at the end of July, record hot temperatures in Chablis : 42.6°C on the 25th of July.
End of August it was still very hot, and above all dry.
So the harvests began in the region the beginning of September, around the 10th in Chabis, on the 17th at Domaine d’ELISE!
The quality is excellent but its necessary to take note that there a lot of small berries that were slightly dried out, and some even burned by the sun.
The yields are only 40HL/HA instead of the usual 60.
The degrees vary between 12.5 and 13.5, which is very high for Chablis and Petit Chablis.
However the acidities are correct, allowing for making characteristic Chablis.
They will be for medium term keeping.
The juice is already tasting very well : its round and fruited, very agreeable on the palate.
Since the year 2000 we have experinced many good years with climatic warming.
Sometimes with excessive ripeness comes a drop in acidity, which is not suitable for Chablis.
Happily, le Domaine d’Elise always has good acidity because of the rocky, very calcareous soil.
The news in our dear Burgundy, the 2019 vintage will be magnificent but very small quantity, half the harvest at our Domaine.
Regarding the weather, we had a mild winter: a fine budding, but which for the Chardonnay happened under rain and cold.
The summer was very hot and dry; lack of water and incredibly elevated temperatures.
The harvests took place around September 9th.
With a beautiful phenolic maturity, incredible concentration and high alocoholic degrees but a very good balance of acidity/alcohol.
Concerning the 2015 vintage, we had ann exceptional growing season, that’s to say a record of sunny days. And for us several passages of rain at the right time, which is not the case in the whole of Burgundy.
Concerning the white wines, we have very pure wines of beautiful matter, beautiful acidity, beautiful length in mouth, promising great wines in a relatively normal quantity, that is between 25 and 45 hl/ha
For the reds, which were harvested first, because the crop was small, between 25 and 35 hl/ha the wines are deeply colored with a lovely tannic structure, a lot of concentration as a result of the small quantities coming from a beautiful parcel, therefore very promising wines for the moment, it is still early to tell the temps de garde (how long to lay it down and when it will be ready to drink).
The 2015 vintage was marked by heat, and intense dryness.Harvest began August 28th, two weeks early, maturity was excellent, and the sanitary state of the grapes was exceptional.
For the reds, the 2015 vintage will be probably be among the best vintages that we have had here in recent decades.
The Morgon and Chiroubles 2015 have intense color, aromas of black fruits and spices, an imposing structure, and silken tannins.
The Chardonnays from St. Veran have an appealing fruitiness, freshness, a very structured mouth, with a lot of roundness, resulting in wines that are very agreeable to drink.
After a very rainy winter, we had a quite dry and warm spring, which caused a very rapid budbreak.
Beautiful weather during flowering, but end of june, we had a hailstorm in the villages of Beaune, Pommard, Volnay, Monthelie and Meursault, causing a 20% up to 95% loss of crop, depending on the vineyard.
The month of july and until the 15 th of august, the weather was average, after which, continuing through harvest the weather was beautiful, and quite hot reaching temperatures of 28 degrees..The result is wines with a lot of fruit, a lot of aromatics, and fullness. Lovely concentration, but not aggressive.
It’s still a bit early to tell but I think “un vin de plaisir”, easy to drink.
After a summer of mixed weather, the sun of September made the wine growers of RULLY smile once again.
We were already lucky having escaped the hailstorms and other inclemencies of summer.
The grapes are a beautiful , clean quality, both in Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. The grapes are healthy, sweet and aromatic, The Pinot Noir is sorted by hand on a large vibrating sorting table that is efficient and effective.
I tasted our RULLY Chardonnays in barrel, I find them to be already supple, well balanced, pleasing……
I think that this promising vintage could be a great year, notably for the whites…
The pinot noirs, now tranquil in their oak barrels, will be tasted next……
As for the 2014 vintage, we are very happy with the vintage, and for two reasons:
First of all, after several successive vintages of very small harvests, here finally is a bountiful harvest, with the correct meteorological conditions for maturation and good weather during harvest. This should allow us to replenish our stocks.
In addition, the quality of the vintage is really there, the wines are very perfumed and very gourmand.
The white vines have a beautiful balance, with an intense aromatic richness. These wines will certainly be very successful, with a very consistant quality.
The red wines from the north of Beaujolais are equally successful . They express typicity of style and are very structured. There will be a few lighter wines, but many very good ones.
To sum up, if I was offered 20 more years like 2014, I’d sign up immediately.