I am always interested in getting opinions from the people we have regular contact with, so we recently sent out a survey to many clients and subscribers. The results were interesting, and one of the things many responders wanted to know about was related to wine vintage information. Today I wanted to shed a little light (and some reaching predictions) on the 2015 vintage in Italy and France. Keep in mind there is variability between regions as well, but this is an overarching view.
The new vintage is too young to really definitively compare it with any other year yet, but there are some factors we can look at to assess it all the same. My take as a non-expert is that the vintage will be great, just having drunk the Beaujolais Nouveau and reading additional information online. When I say non-expert, that is to say that we are not passing off our opinions as professional reviewers.
A few factors to consider when looking at the 2015 vintage- the ideal conditions for growing and harvesting different grapes within each region vary. What is great for one varietal may not be as great for another. Let's dive in, though- in Italy the conditions through the summer and into the fall harvest were similar to that of 2010. The weather was hot in June and July, with August and September cooling considerably and bringing rain. This allowed grapes to ripen a little later into the season and keep great acidity, which is one factor in considering the aging potential of a wine.
France was very similar, with a torrid summer cooling off a bit later on. The biggest impact in France has been on the volume of fruit produced. Overall, a smaller quantity of grapes were produced however quality levels remained the same. Some experts speculate that the end results with a lower yield can produce better wine. The Beaujolais Nouveau is fantastic and unique, so if it is any indication there are great things to come. In terms of value, a lower yield may also mean a lower supply, and thus an increase in prices for the 2015 vintage. That is something else to keep an eye on. Speaking of keeping an eye out, watch our blog for more on the 2015 vintage.