Awards and citations:

1997: Le Prix du Champagne Lanson Noble Cuvée Award for investigations into Champagne for the Millennium investment scams

2001: Le Prix Champagne Lanson Ivory Award for

2011: Vindic d'Or MMXI – 'Meilleur blog anti-1855'

2011: Robert M. Parker, Jnr: ‘This blogger...’:

2012: Born Digital Wine Awards: No Pay No Jay – best investigative wine story

2012: International Wine Challenge – Personality of the Year Award

Monday, 24 August 2015

2015 Prospects for Loire Vintage – weather figures from Tours

4th August 2015: warm sunny evening on the Loire@Saumur 

There is optimism in the Loire, as well as other parts of France, about for the prospects for the 2015 vintage. It is still too early to make firm predictions as things can always go wrong at the last minute* and, although picking of the early varieties should start around the beginning of September, Cabernet Franc in Saumur, Chinon, Bourgueil etc. won't start until the last week/10 days of September. 

There is still time for the weather to turn bringing continuous heavy rain, with the danger of grapes splitting through a sudden abundance of water after long dry spells. Hail, too of course, remains threat. Speaking of which there have been high winds in Indre et Loire today with 5000 homes without electricity with the Loches area particularly hit – apparently Amboise and Tours have been less affected. 

So, while we keep our fingers crossed, here are some weather stats from the Met station at Tours from June, July and August to date. Averages throughout are based on 1981-2010

June 2015
Rain: 28.9 mm (average – 46.1mm)
Max temps: 24.9˚C (average 22.8˚C) Hottest day: 35.7˚C (30.6) Max temps in 2003 – 28.8˚C
Sunshine hours: 310.6 (average 228.0)

July 2015
Rain: 14.0mm  (average: 53.2mm)
Max temps: 27.5˚C with hottest max: 37.5˚C (average: 25.5˚C
Sunshine: 256.4 hours (average: 239.4 hours)

August 2015 (to 23.8)
Rain: 38.6mm (average: 42.5mm) 
Max temps: 27.3˚C (average: 25.4˚C)
Sunshine hours: 154.7 (average: 236.46)

Over each of the three summer months it has been drier, warmer and sunnier – with the marked exception of August so far. It would seem very likely that August's rainfall in Tours, at least, will be above average by the time this month is out. 

To date rainfall over the three months is well down on the average: 61.5 mm has fallen so far compared with the average of 141.8. 

* Just like they can go right at the last minute as they did in 2014 with a very fine September.    

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