Excitement around the 2019 Burgundy vintage is running high.
The winter was extremely mild but moved into a chilly spring, with April seeing biting frosts that cut yields in the Mâconnais. Flowering was uneven due to a cooler than average June and some bunches suffered from millerandage, which again cut yields. Temperatures warmed up rapidly to such an extent that, by July and August, many of the vines were suffering from heat and drought stress.
The summer of 2019 has shown climate change at its most evident and much of the crop was lost due to vines either being too stressed or grapes being sunburnt. The berries that did survive were generally richly concentrated, raising hopes for a small but excellent harvest. Although there was a danger the heat could give the fruit overripe jammy notes, reports suggest the wines are surprisingly well-balanced.
The majority of the harvest was underway by September, however the damage from the April frosts early in the season and the intense summer heat meant yields were far lower than normal. The resulting wines are said to be potentially superb and early tastings show great promise for both reds and whites.
Reports indicate the reds to be complex, richly fruit-forward and refined, with the best examples likely to cellar well. However, there are likely to be excellent examples from across the board. The whites are also said to be extremely concentrated, rich, and ripe, but without losing the crucial balance and elegance. The best examples are likely to be very ageworthy.
Although, it is perhaps too early to make a definitive judgment, most reports suggest that 2019 Burgundy will be a small but brilliant vintage. Small yields may mean limited allocations, particularly of the top wines, and demand is likely to be high. Expect prices to reflect this.