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Rhône 2018

vintage report Rhône 2018

Sun-kissed Rhône seduction

Generalising about the 2018 Rhône vintage is difficult. Where it was a small crop it was tiny and where it wasn’t it was big! Equally paradoxical is the style of the wines – some of which are really attractive and seductive now, others are blockbusters that will require great patience. Nor do these differences divide neatly into the Northern or Southern Rhône. What is clear, though, is the pattern of the season: 2018 started with an intolerably prolonged wet period in Spring that was ended by a long bout of hot, dry weather that began at the end of June; there was an extremely hot August and finally a harvest period that was very warm throughout. One grower I spoke to described 2018 as “tropical.” Low yields or high, 2018 produced rich, ripe grapes that were in tip top health. Alcohols and tannic structures were relatively high and acids low. There are plenty of delicious wines to seek out, but whether they are for keeping or drinking before 2017s, 2016s and 2015s varies from Domaine to Domaine.

2018 Releases

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