Situated on the fine chalky-clay soils in a natural amphitheatre, the Château did not escape the frosts of 27th April. This has entailed a great deal of difficult work and as time went on, we had to make very precise changes to the way we managed the frost-affected and unaffected parcels.
Amongst the unaffected vines, we were lucky that there were no more interruptions to the growing season which was ahead of schedule by around two weeks. Having undergone a massive restructuring 10 years ago, Château de Ricaud’s vineyards have found the perfect balance, despite changeable weather: a succession of very dry and hot periods at the beginning of the summer, more temperate and humid in August and the beginning of September. We began harvesting the first parcel of Merlot with a renewed sense of calm on 14th September, in a vineyard in tip-top condition.
The harvest carried on steadily up to 3rd October for the reds, according to the ideal ripeness of each parcel. We carried out two selections of the Semillon from Loupiac on 28th September and 9th October.
The sweet wines, with aromas of peach and citrus fruit, are remarkable. The red wines, which were transferred into barrels for maturation in January, are intense in colour and well-structured. After our initial concerns, and despite significantly reduced volumes due to the frost, we have been rewarded by the undeniable quality of the vintage.