The 2016 growing season was widely considered to be awful and, by 2017, the vines were still in a state of recovery.
The winter was cool and dry and – despite a particularly cold turn in January – without snowfall. By February and March, temperatures rose significantly prompting an early budburst. The warm weather continued to inspire rapid new vine growth, however the idyllic conditions were not to last. Late April saw a sharp drop in temperatures, which brought significant frost damage to both Chablis and the Côte d’Or. However, the previous year’s devastating frosts had significantly prepared producers and more preventative measures were already in place to minimize damage. Luckily, temperatures never sank low enough for frost to fully manifest and a bullet was, thankfully, dodged.
Late May saw temperatures pick up again and a successful flowering ensued. The summer was mostly warm and dry bar the occasional rain shower, which was by this time much needed, and a less-needed bout of hail in July.
Many of the vines that had suffered badly in the previous year’s frosts had gone into overdrive this year and were now, in some cases, overladen with fruit. Some producers chose to green harvest to counter this problem, as too much fruit can result in a lack of concentration in the individual berries.
August was warm, dry and steady with few days of searing heat and the harvest for whites began towards the end of the month.
The harvest for reds started early September and it was successfully brought in before heavy rains subsequently fell.
Overall, the wines were very good having benefited from one of the most consistent growing seasons in recent years.
The reds, in particular, had some roaring successes with many appellations delivering. Particular standouts include the wines from the Premier Cru appellation of Les Pruliers in Nuits-Saint-Georges. The biggest criticism that can only perhaps be leveled at the 2017 reds was that some slightly lacked in concentration compared to previous years.
Although there were arguably few wines that definitively captured the vintage, a wealth of good-quality wines from all over Burgundy were made.
Vintage quality: Good
Current condition: Ready to drink, will keep