Harvest 2017: Spain

Harvest 2017 - Spain

It was a varied harvest across Spain – from devastatingly-low yields due to frosts in Rioja, to good volumes for sherry producers. The frosts were followed by a heatwave that affected many regions – which might result in some regionalised price increases. Scorching temperatures accompanied a drought that had the reservoirs half full before the end of July, the lowest for over 20 years. While quantities are down overall, quality remains high.

 

Here's a roundup from our producers across Spain:

Rioja

Vivanco

“In what has been described as ‘the worst year for agriculture in Spain for decades’, the story from Rioja is obviously one of the highest profile,” says Bibendum buyer for Spain Jamie Avenell. Rioja was hit badly by the severe April frosts, with Rioja Alta and Rioja Alavesa the worst affected. Potential yields were then further decreased by the second year of drought conditions and very hot weather through the summer. Volumes are expected to be down by 25-40% across the region.

 

Catalunya

Acustic Celler | Priorat

“2017 has been a very extreme year: we suffered from 6 months’ water shortage and high temperatures. The vineyards resisted very well, and we have been left with a very, very tiny yield making intense and powerful wines,” says winemaker Albert Jane.


Bodegas Tomas Cusine | Costers del Segre

Tomas Cusine saw the longest vintage on record this year, lasting nearly three months. The vineyards were slightly affected by spring frosts, but more so by the severe drought. Careful sorting had to be done to remove raisoned grapes from less drought-resistant varieties like Riesling and Muller Thurgau. Overall the quality of the grapes was high, but quantities are low. “This vintage is good in acidity and we’re seeing outstanding finesse,” says owner and winemaker Tomas Cusine Barber.


Cava Llopart | Subirats

Llopart saw an excellent quality harvest, with very healthy grapes. They were lucky in avoiding the spring frosts, due to the altitude of the vineyards and south westerly breezes. The yields are a quarter smaller than the 20-year average however, due to heat waves and a lack of rain during the summer.

 Llopart

Madrid

Bernabeleva

Despite some frozen shoots early on in the year, the vines at Bernabeleva recovered and managed to avoid disease and pests this year. The vineyards also evaded localised hail storms in July and August, but experienced drought which has slightly reduced yields.

“2017 has been the warmest year since the 1960s in Spain, so the wines have more colour and alcohol, but we have been able to keep good acidity levels, and the wines show a nice balance, so far,” says winemaker Marc Isart.
 

Andalucia

La Ina | Jerez

The southerly location of Andalucia meant that vineyards here escaped the worst of the spring frosts. Summer was hot for La Ina, but, unlike last year, they did not suffer the crop-diminishing winds of the Levante. The harvest was one of the earliest in the bodegas’ history, and grape quality was excellent.

 

La Guita | Manzanilla

“2017 harvest in the Sherry region has provided good volume, particularly compared to 2016 where we had some mildew attacking coastal ‘pagos’,” says export director Ignacio López de Carrizosa. “The quality of the 2017 harvest was also very good, with extremely healthy grapes. This year we had a particularly early harvest caused by very high temperatures generated by long periods of the hot, dry Levante wind.

“Our Palomino musts from Miraflores are showing beautiful mineral character and expressive salinity, which is what we are looking for to top up the younger Criaderas of La Guita.”

 

For more on the harvest across the Northern Hemisphere see our handy infographic.


Date:
20th December 2017


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