A new harvest at Viña Concha y Toro
In plain sunny summer, the first harvests of white and cold climate red varieties begin at the northern wine valleys of Chile. As the grapes ripe and the technical teams decide that they are in optimal conditions, the harvest begins to take shape and grow until its end on the last days of May. Here are some initial appreciations of our experts in what is already the 2018 harvest of Concha y Toro.
As tradition, the harvest started at Limarí Valley, in Coquimbo region, beginning to cut the first ripe clusters of Chardonnay on January 29th. These grapes will go to sparkling wines as well as to different lines of Concha y Toro wines.
Then Pinot Noir, Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Gris, Viognier and Syrah harvest will continue in this semi- desert climate valley, with low rainfall and located 300 kilometers at the North of Santiago. Its unique characteristics, with mineral-laden soils and the freshness of the Andes Mountains, plus the vivacious sun of this region, allows Limarí to be one of the valleys that offers the greatest potential for white grapes as well for cold climate reds.
Due to the lower temperatures experienced this year, the maturity of the grapes came more slowly and allowed them to be harvested at their best, with tranquility: “As it is a colder year, we will have very interesting wines, as they should be fresher and with more citrus fruit expression in the case of Chardonnay, and loaded with berries aromas in the case of Pinot Noir and Syrah”, explains Javier Villarroel, Senior Winemaker at Limarí Valley.
Analyzing the preparation for harvest time in central valleys such as Maipo, Cachapoal and Colchagua, it is important to take into account the climatological and differentiating data of this year, compared to previous harvests.
Rodolfo Chávez, Winemaker and Manager of Don Melchor Vineyard at Puente Alto, comments: “It was a rather cold year and at the same time, it had an important concentration of rainfall during the months of May to October. These factors, such as the high average temperatures recorded between November and January, generated a delay of 12 days in the sprouting of the Cabernet Sauvignon of Puente Alto, confirming it was a warm year as the season has gone and slightly extending the period of veraison in Cabernet Sauvignons, compared to other years”.
According to this analysis, Rodolfo Chávez estimates that 2018 harvest of Puente Alto’s terroir will be optimal and in line with what was estimated and with healthy grapes of impeccable quality:
“Today we are finishing the discharge and we will begin the final counts to be clear about the yields of this year. We are coordinated with all the winemaking and viticulture team, so that the beginning of this harvest in Puente Alto is on time and with the expected results”.
The harvest is the most important period of the year for the wine industry, involving the participation of a large number of collaborators throughout all the valleys of the country. For Concha y Toro, the beginning of the harvest represents the spirit that the winery has maintained since its foundation, 135 years ago: a great passion for wine and the constant search for excellence in all its processes.