The other day I found this article: “Estimations of Vintage“, in Spanish, at the site of the Federación Española de Asociaciones de Enólogos. Unfortunately it was all in Spanish, so after some struggle and with a little help from a friend, I am proud to offer part one of three of our translation of this report into English. Since it is alphabetical by region today we start in Andalusia and end in the Balearic region. I hope that for the most part it is clear as to what is being said since translations sometimes are hard to get right. In fact I know what “Vegetative and Sanitary states” are when they talk of them below, but I feel like there is another set of words we use for them in English. Anybody have an idea?
On the other hand for those of you that already have Spanish in your language arsenal, you don’t need to wait. Just head over to PREVISION DE COSECHA INFORME VENDIMIA 2005 and enjoy. From what it sounds like overall most regions were down on quantity, though it appears that the wine that will be produced could be of a very high quality. I guess we’ll just have to wait and see.
- Condado de Huelva – The vegetative and sanitary state of the vineyard is good, the clusters have had a fullness and good size, obtaining an optimal maturity of harvest. The effect of the drought has been a decrease in the yield and the production of the vineyard (-15%) However, the quality of the fruit is very good, leading us to predict that excellent wines will be produced.
- Málaga y Sierra de Málaga – The vegetative state of the vineyard is normal, the maturity of the grapes is good and are expected to produce a good quality grape. Due to the drought, the harvest will be reduced by 10% over last year. In relation to that of the health of the vine, there was some damage observed in the vine tendrils caused by the green mosquito.
- Marco de Jerez – The lack of precipitation the regions of Spain have endured throughout the year has been especially noticed in Marco de Jerez, where only a third of the regular precipitation has fallen. Because of this, the 2005 harvest, which is almost complete, is predicted to be between 35 and 40% smaller in volume to last year’s crop. On the positive side, the drought has provided a total absence of health problems for the grape, so that a harvest of very high quality is expected.
- Montilla-Moriles – The grapes have acquired a degree of maturation with very good health. This year a reduction of 30% in the harvest is in part due to the lack of precipitation and in part due to rabbits and hares, which have destroyed the harvest by between 15% and 20%. Despite this the quality will be good.
- Campo de Borja – The climatology has been favorable throughout all the cycle of the grapevine with absence of frosts and hail storms. Excellent flowering of all varieties of grape took place. The phenology of the grapevine has advanced the campaign with respect to the previous one around 10-15 days. Absence of plagues and diseases. The typical diseases of the grapevine such as mildew, odium and botrytis did not develop. The extreme drought is affecting the end of the cycle and as a consequence small sized grapes are being produced. A harvest about 25% less than the previous year is expected (but 25% greater than the historical average of the DO ( 1980-2004 )).
- Calatayud the climatology during the first part of the vegetative cycle was characterized by a winter which had very low temperatures for a long period of time. These low winter temperatures produced both irregular damages to the young shoots, decreasing the amount of bunches per vine and to a loss in production.The absence of spring frosts has lead to an abundant amount grapes for the harvest. Analyzing the behavior of the growth by varieties it can be said it was good for all, being very good in the red grenache.
The cycle was delayed until the arrival of the heat which along with the drought made it equal out to that of a normal year. The vegetative and sanitary state of the vineyard is very good and has very good productive expectations. In recent days, rains have contributed 25 l/m2 which have alleviate d the drought that has been most evident in vineyards planted at lower altitudes and in areas of rugged earth .
It is still very premature to venture numbers on the final production of grape, but the production estimations point to reduction in production by 20. 8%. This reduction is primarily due to last year’s production which resulted in a very abundant harvest causing the stocks to undergo the effort to produce such a large amount of grape. The second leading factor of this reduction is due to the damages in the bunches (yemas) caused by the long-lasting low temperatures throughout this winter and the third factor being the marked drought that the vineyards have been enduring since the last harvest.
- Cariñena – the vegetative and health state of the vineyard is good with an optimal maturity, the harvest is expected to be between 30 and 40% less than last year. The clusters displayed good fullness with good size and of optimal quality. No problems of diseases.
- Somontano – the frosts of the winter that caused an irregular bud break the water shortage originated by the drought during the summer, have caused a reduction of grapes (40%) in the stocks that display and optimal state of health and maturity.Harvest will be very good as far as quality. The reduction in the production and clusters with smaller sized grapes, and therefore a greater percentage of skin on the pulp , and greater concentration of ideal properties for wine elaboration, together with the engineering control of the plantations on the part of the grape growers and the winery are determining factors at the time of predicting high quality harvest.
- Binissalem – After a long , cold winter, with snowfall until end of March, the buds sprouted with some delay as compared to a normal year. Absence of spring frosts. The lack of precipitation n has been evident throughout the vegetative cycle.The high spring temperatures and a summer with hot days have allowed a good vegetative development. The maturation of the grapes is developing very satisfactorily and at a pace that we can consider normal. A great harvest is anticipated in both quantity (10% less than last year) and in quality.
Stay tuned more to come….Ryan Opaz