A wet winter and mild temperatures that did not allow for natural soil remediation, followed by several rainier periods, created ideal conditions for the arrival of mildew. Even with continuous treatments - 11 this year compared to 7 last year - the vigilance required has put vine growers’ nerves to the test. Past mildew attacks and rainfall accumulations have resulted in large losses in yield for all those who refuse to use chemical treatments. Fortunately, the dry end to the season meant that the affected vines lost nothing of their quality and given their small volumes, were not prevented from maturing. It also led to early phenolic and technological maturity (the grape harvest started on September 18th). Waiting longer, though possible, likely promoted an increase in alcohol content, excessively low acidity and very jammy aromas. Our alcoholic fermentation is now complete, 57% in open barrels and 8% in closed barrels (a new experience to tell you about). Deep hues and merlots that are all about elegance… with malolactic fermentations soon to come.