Mid-August can be the perfect time to get an idea of what the current year’s vintage will be like. In August of 2005, we had every hope of seeing one of the finest vintages ever if only the weather would remain favourable, which, in the end, it did. In 2006, however, there were doubts about the 2006 vintage due to a cold month of August.
In 2007, after a mild winter, bud-break was somewhat early. March and April saw irregular temperatures, often high in April. May was rainy, receiving 104 mm compared to the 30-year average of 80,5 mm. One must go back to the year 2000 to see a month of May with more than 100 mm. Temperatures continued to be irregular with some days nearing 30°C at the end of May. The result was that bloom occurred rather early (the first flowers appearing around May 15th), one week earlier than in 2006, but spread out and heterogeneous depending on each vineyard’s location. The meteorological conditions of June were close to average, but with a noticeable deficit of sunshine.
July was drier than normal (45 mm of rainfall compared to 55 mm) and cooler (19,5°C compared to 20,8°C) in spite of the high temperatures seen on July 14th and 15th, and the fact that it rained almost every other day. Véraison occurred starting from July 15th onward, the same as in 2006. It was obvious to see the effect that terrior had on the véraison, with certain blocks ripening well in advance of others.
Up until August 25th there had only been 2 significantly hot days (over 35°C), the other days experienced irregular temperatures with lows around 12–14°C. The first fortnight was very dry, which accelerated the conclusion of the véraison. The second fortnight saw stormy weather with a lot of rain, particularly on August 29th. Just before, on August 27th and 28th, it was very hot (38°C), but on the 30th, continuous clear weather arrived with cool and dry north winds, cool nights (14–15°C), and afternoon temperatures of around 27°C.
Once again, at the beginning of September, the best terroirs” were easily identifiable by the absence of small young light green leaves which, present in other vineyards, show where unnecessary new growth is still taking place.
September saw exceptionally sunny weather (comparable to a normal month of July), cool and dry (on average 1–2°C below normal), with warm afternoons. October followed with the same type of weather. The grapes and leaves remained healthy and the care given the vineyard throughout the summer permitted us to wait patiently for optimum maturity before starting to pick. We began the harvest on September 29th and continued off and on until the last grapes were brought in on October 19th, with the Cabernet Sauvignons coming in between the 15th and the 19th.