2018 Vintage Report

Described as "the Vintage of a lifetime", 2018 was a lovely long growing season with record high temperatures and minimal rainfall throughout the season. 

Bud burst was early thanks to the warming soils hastened due to, what once was uncharacteristically warm days and clear skies, during this early stage of the growing season. This weather tends to put growers on edge as it will often mean a much higher risk of damage to vulnerable vine tissue from Spring frosts. There was no frost damage at Bluestone.

 

Flowering was as perfect as you would get. Good direct sunlight, warm days and warm nights allowed for a very successful fertilisation and subsequently, a strong berry set. The bunches were packed with uniformly sized berries signalling a very consistent flowering stage. Any detritus, such as fallen flower caps, dried up nicely in the heat and were removed from clusters by gentle breezes, helping prevent rot inside the bunches. 

Veraison was earlier than usual. The hot weather and minimal rainfall meant that maturation was on for a steady and consistent course, allowing for perfect sugar accumulation and textbook acidity metabolism.  This generous weather continued well into harvest, however, the nights started to cool down considerably. This meant that sugar accumulation and acid breakdown slowed, making way for flavour and aroma components in the grapes skins more time to develop.

Bluestone Vineyards, Wiltshire, England, SP4 0EW     www.bluestonevineyards.co.uk      nmcconnell@bluestonevineyards.co.uk