Forty Years Later, 2022 Is Set To Be Another Bordeaux Vintage For The Ages
Forty years since 1982, a mythical vintage of outstanding quality, the 2022 vintage, promises to be the new model for Bordeaux wine-growers after its first taste test, says French daily Les Echos.
BORDEAUX — If the year 2022 was a great vintage for Bordeaux, could it be the best since 1982? In spite of a warming climate, vineyards in the region have been resilient. This year’s wines present an excellent balance between concentration and freshness.
Still, the year was not all smooth sailing for winegrowers, who were plagued by spring frosts, hailstorms and droughts that lasted all throughout the growing season. This was paired with abundant sunshine and particularly high temperatures. The vines were confronted with three major heat waves, which began in mid-June, and allowed them to adapt and show persistence in the face of the year's other extreme weather events.
The approach of the harvest — one of the earliest ever observed — brought calmer conditions, making it possible to obtain optimal maturities. But the harvested grapes were small and concentrated, explaining the below-average volumes (4.11 million hectoliters) winegrowers have been reaping for the third consecutive year.
Power and delicacy
The successes were brought about by Bordeaux's calcareous soils, which allowed the plants to avoid succumbing to water stress. Soil work, now more widely implemented in the vineyard, has also been decisive in maintaining the balance of the grapes. The richness of the juice and the intensity of their color is the force behind a delicate infusion of grapes in the wine. Ultimately, the year's Bordeaux reds possess a depth and smoothness that proves to be particularly digestible and fresh. Thanks to their acidity levels, the whites combine a concentrated flavor with palpable tension.
People harvesting grapes in a vineyard in the French Bordeaux region.
In short, the iDealWine rating:
Marquis D’Angerville. Meticulous work in the vineyards is one of the keys to the success of the Marquis d'Angerville estate, whose reputation is long-established, driven by the vision of Jacques d'Angerville (the father of the current owner). The vines are carefully selected, the yields reduced and microbial life favored. It's not surprising to see its wines shine at auction, like the Volnay Premier Cru Clos des Ducs — the estate's monopoly — a 2018 magnum of which fetched €397 on iDealwine.com in February.
Cuvée Nicolas François 2008, champagne Billecart-Salmon. A testament to the time it took, the new opus of this top-of-the-range cuvée was revealed after more than twelve years of aging in the cellar. Coming mainly from the most famous great vintages, this racy blend of pinot noir (60%) and chardonnay (40%) dosed at 2.9 g/l reveals great complexity, depth and rigidity. Citrus fruits, figs, almonds, white flowers and light toasted hints from a share of barrel aging (17%) make up a marvelous bouquet. A wine of incredible youth which promises a long life. Price: €170.
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