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

Tuesday, 8 October 2013

2013 Loire vintage: a day in AC Touraine

Sauvignon Blanc with some rot

Close up rot

Chris Kissack – The Wine Doctor
Welcomed by French producers as this medic loves wine!
Here spending a few days in the Loire looking at the 2013 vintage

Following 2012, 2013 is certainly proving to be another challenging vintage. We spent yesterday visiting producers in the Cher Valley. Leaving aside hail in Vouvray in June and frost in places in late April, the harvest is proving difficult and challenging. The potential alcohol is much lower than has become customary in recent years. It is rare to come across Sauvignon Blanc with more than 12˚ potential. 

"The dry weather in August and early September blocked the maturing of the grapes and the rain when it came in mid-September proved to be too late. It is a vintage for the sorting table!" Catherine Roussel (Clos Roche Blanche).

"The Gamay is stuck at 10.5˚." Didier Barrouillet (Clos Roche Blanche).

"I will wait until the grapes reach 12˚. Even in 2013 I'm not going to chapitalise." Noëlla Morantin.

Rot is quite prevalent in the vineyard, especially amongst the whites – the Côt and Cabernet are, so far, more resistant. Most growers are now having to pick their Sauvignon, although some would have preferred to wait a bit longer. The fine sunny weather forecast for this week has only partly materialised. In addition Friday's weather that was supposed to be dry is now forecast to be wet. So far the rot is more towards the noble rather than grey, but that could soon change with more rain. The rotten grapes here, as in Muscadet and Anjou, still taste clean although they are not markedly sweet.  

"2013 is the most difficult and technical of my career (which started in 1999). Fortunately my grapes ripened early and I was able to start nearly 10 days ago. We will finish the whites tomorrow (21 hectares). In a few parcels we have reached 12˚ potential. The average is between 11.5˚-11.7˚. Not sure what will happen with the reds." Vincent Ricard.         

At Le Clos du Porteau: Chris K, Isabelle Clermont-Tonnerre, CRM

Clos Roussely (above and below)

Very old Côt: nearing 120 years old: Clos Roche Blanche

Biodiversity: Clos Roche Blanche

The Wine Doctor@work

Gamay: extraordinary number of grapes green harvested 
still leaving a considerable crop – small parcel in Pouillé 

 Laurent Saillard (Noëlla Morantin)

 Lunch@Noëlla Morantin

Chris with new magazine 180˚C
The photographer behind was spending a couple of days 
with Noëlla for a photoshot for 180˚C

 Sauvignon Blanc

Thierry Michaud

Vincent Ricard

Today we are off to Sancerre and Pouilly-sur-Loire – à suivre!

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