Harvest 2017: Brazil and Uruguay
The quality of the 2017s from these two up-and-coming winemaking countries in South America is set to be good. Look out for high quality Brazilian fizz and fresh, juicy Uruguayan reds.
Buyer Paul Meihuizen said: “The threat of El Nino was always something at the back of all our South American suppliers’ minds this year. Uruguay in particular had a very wet January but there was plenty of sunshine during flowering and the rain stayed away during the harvest. The quality from both Brazil and Uruguay is looking great this year so I am very excited to taste through them all when ready. Brazil and Uruguay are two relatively new wine countries supplying the UK trade but we continue to see double digit growth with both which is testament to the great quality that they offer.”
Here is a round-up of the harvest by two of our producers:
A good year overall, with the country avoiding the La Nina phenomenon it had been expecting. Humidity in January and February was alleviated by short, well-distributed rainfall in Campanha.
Pinot Noir and Chardonnay were picked in the first week of January in Serra Gaucha, where the quality of sparkling wine looks set to be outstanding. Harvest finished in the third week of March in Campanha with Cabernet Sauvignon.
Along with their Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, Miolo were impressed by the high quality of their Pinot Grigio, Tempranillo and Touriga Nacional.
A wet and difficult year overall, but with fortuitous respite during flowering (November) and harvest (February/ March) which allowed grapes to ripen fully. While yields will be down in 2017, quality will be noticeably high.
Good conditions around harvest have resulted in white varieties with fresh, pronounced aromas and varietal typicity. They are also exhibiting an interesting mineral character; perhaps a result of roots exploring further into the rocky sub-soil.
Reds are showing a good level of tannin maturation and quality, with Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Pinot Noir in particular, producing fresh, juicy wines that show off a true expression of their terroir.