A great vintage offering the perfect combination of wine growing expertise and nature’s blessing

December 2017 marked the end of one of the driest years we have ever experienced. 2018 kicked off with a very significant shortfall of water but fortunately, January witnessed some substantial rainfall before a cold, dry February.

From March onwards, the weather switched to particularly unusual conditions for Gigondas. It rained frequently, virtually every other day, setting the tempo for spring until mid-June. The incredibly hot temperatures created the perfect set of ingredients for promoting unprecedented fungal pressure. Downy mildew rapidly caused damage to the foliage and from the beginning of June, the fungus developed on the clusters. This widespread attack would subsequently have an impact on the crop. The fall in yields was fairly uneven and Gigondas was moderately affected compared to some neighbouring wine regions. Ironically, flowering, which occurred simultaneously with this, went well.

Next came a very dry summer, when temperatures soared. With a few exceptions, the vineyards of Gigondas did not suffer any water stress, and managed to hold out well until rain fell on August 9 (100 mm). Nevertheless, the benefit of the rain was tangible on the fruit which rapidly increased in volume. At this stage, the vintage was top-notch, but remained fragile. Fortunately, the following weeks were perfectly dry. This year, we had to be attentive and particularly patient in order to pick perfectly ripe grapes.

Most Gigondas grapes were picked between September 15 and October 5, though harvesting continued through to October 19 in the latest-ripening areas.

The wines are structured, elegant and balanced. Their bouquet is precise and expressive and the tannins very ripe. Such great balance makes the 2018s accessible and compelling, while preserving Gigondas’ hallmark complexity and powerfulness.

 2018 enables Gigondas to prove once again how consistent and stable its vineyard sites are.

Copyright : Laurent Philis – Philis Œnologie à Gigondas

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