Back from the Côtes.
The weather was more than a little changeable; blue sky and 30°C Thursday, 22° and intermittent rain on Friday, indeed thunder in Savigny, but none in Beaune. This lack of consistency has been the only constant factor this year. The teams go out and spray against whatever they want to spray against – then 3 days later they have to do it again because the rain washes it away – of-course, then it rains again!
Still the vines are in rude health. It seems too early for mildew, but there is plenty of ‘millerandange’ of the grapes i.e. very small and sometimes uneven grape development – this year caused by a uneven (due to weather) flowering – this is potentially a good thing for quality, as such small berries have a higher solids to juice (mainly water) ratio.
UPDATE, From a local winemaking correspondent:
For the moment the mildew is pretty much confined to organic, or less-than-perfectly-conventionally-sprayed, vines in the plain. A picture of the mildew situation in the plain below Chambolle – shame my photographic skills aren’t up to much! It doesn’t show, but the young leaf top-left is also 100% infected. It’s a well-tended and often-sprayed vineyard too, farmed by a well-known organic domaine. I think the grapes are safe now, but they won’t get very ripe without leaves!
100 days from flowering to harvest is the usual rule of thumb, so those who want to plan a trip to the Côtes for harvesting, should pencil into their diaries September 20th and onwards.
I also tasted lots more 2007’s – but that’s another story…