Yes I know, it’s very early to be making comparisons – but – we still do have some useful reference points, even at this early stage of the 2023 vintage.
Most places seem to have come through the frosts unscathed – though there are still 2 weeks until the Saint-Glace when the potential of frosts visiting the vineyards can be (historically!) forgotten.
The weather has remained rather fresh in the nights and early mornings despite sunny sheltered daytime spots quickly heating up. The result of this pattern of weather is a vintage whose early indicators suggest a mid to late September harvest – see below – but things can, and still may, change as quickly as the weather!
Most of the chardonnay are now showing their first leaves but the pinot noir and gamay are barely breaking their buds – only a few sunny spots are starting to show leaves.
Plenty of vineyards sites – last week – still had their baguettes (canes) standup up – often with extra buds left in place. The ‘definitive’ pruning to come – i.e. the cutting of the last 4 buds, or so, and then attaching the cane to the wire – with this done, all the buds see the same amount of sap versus when ‘standing up’ when the end buds get preferential treatment. This is the utility of late pruners, hoping that if a frost comes, just the end buds – which will anyway be discarded – might be the only parts hurt by the frost.
The last days saw rains in Côte d’Or of up to 20mm – that following a relatively dry and sunny week. To date, the largest challenge in the vines has been the bud-eating caterpillars – the mange-bourgeons – but the work in the vines has been aided/facilitated by the modest amount of rain this year so far – and judging by the number of tractors and horses in action – there is much work to do!
That’s enough for this week!