SOURCE: Burgundy Wine Council

October 01, 2007 11:45 ET

Burgundy: Vintage 2007 Growers Bring Out the Cream of the Crop

NEW YORK, NY--(Marketwire - October 1, 2007) - Although many winegrowing regions are seeing uneven harvests this year, Burgundy winegrowers have just completed promising first tastings. The growers began harvesting only when the grapes reached the perfect ripeness, demonstrating exacting standards from the very beginning, right down to the choices of the vine stocks themselves. Sacrificing parts of the crop has paid off, as have the careful choices made in the vinification process. Despite Mother Nature's best efforts, the 2007 vintage has been rescued from the rain!

This year in Burgundy, the bans des vendanges -- or harvest licenses -- were deliberately announced very early in August, prior to the harvest season. A departure from tradition, this new approach was necessary due to the grapes' early maturation this year. It offered growers unprecedented flexibility in choosing the optimum harvest dates for their vineyards, and served to vastly improve consistency across Burgundy's harvest in a year characterized by very unstable weather conditions.

Burgundy winemakers' expert judgment and mastery of their craft were on display as they patiently waited for just the right time to begin harvesting. Most began by concentrating on the Crémant, then harvested the first Pinot Noir at the end of August. Each Pinot plot received meticulous attention during the harvesting process, which extended over almost three weeks. That created a gap before the Chardonnay grapes were harvested, a twist of fate allowing them to benefit from the return of sunshine in early September. During this time the Chardonnay reached a good level of maturity. Another unique feature of the 2007 vintage was that the Mâcon and Chablis areas were among the last to harvest, and did so concurrently -- in the first ten days of September. Their harvests are now coming to an end.

The extremely strict quality standards of Burgundy wines are achieved only through painstaking attention to detail throughout the winemaking process, requiring the utmost care of the region's winemakers, particularly in years of volatile weather, such as 2007. The winegrowers' decision to keep only the very finest grapes was essential under these conditions.

After harvesting, the winemakers expertly balanced the colors, aromas and tannins latent in the fruit. Upon first tastings, this vintage expressed qualities typical of Pinot Noir grown on Burgundy's great terroirs. Gentle extraction made it possible to obtain roundness and elegance, with fruity aromas and silky-smooth tannins. A fine cherry-red color extends the wines' appeal to the eyes as well as the palate.

While the whites are only just starting to ferment, tastings already reveal very good aromatic potential, expressing all the purity and refinement expected of Burgundy Chardonnay.

As usual, the annual Hospices de Beaune Wine Auction will take place on the third weekend of November -- an excellent opportunity to taste and appreciate this promising new vintage.

Contact Information

  • Media Contacts USA
    Yulia Florinskaya and JoLynn Howe
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    Media Contact Burgundy
    Cécile Mathiaud
    Press Relations, B.I.V.B.
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