The initial appraisal by Alexandre de Lur Saluces sums up the vintage marvellously :"... this is so honeyed and delicious, it makes the taster feel as though he is turning into a bee!"
WEATHER DURING THE GROWING SEASON
After later than usual bud break, violent storms in May fortunately spared Château de Fargues, and the vines were able to take full advantage of fine spring weather and an absolutely ideal summer. Flowering took place in the first days of June. This augured well for a reasonably large crop, as well as a relatively early-maturing one. The water reserves in our clay soils at the end of winter enabled the vines to cope with a dry summer (the sixth warmest summer since 1921) without encountering water stress.
Dry anticyclonic conditions prevailed in early September. Beautiful sunshine was followed by cold nights, making for optimum ripeness. Showers on the 19th and 20th September brought 65 mm of rain, followed by tenacious morning mists and beautiful sunny afternoons - textbook conditions for the development of noble rot! The harvest started on Monday, the 28th of September. Pickers wore tee-shirts from the 2nd to the 6th of October as temperatures reached 30°C.
The harvest went relatively quickly, concentrating grapes with varying degrees of botrytisation, from pourri plein (in which the grapes are fully botrytised ) to pourri rôti (in which the grapes are partly shriveled). Noble rot was given new impetus by stormy weather from the 7th to the 12th of October. On Thursday the 15th, the 3rd and final phase of the harvest began under a clear, blue sky accompanied by a strong, cold, north-easterly wind that dried the grapes. The very last grapes were picked on the evening of October 19th, just 3 weeks after the vintage started. This was not too soon, because a series of heavy showers arrived on the 20th
Area under vine : 13.5529 ha Harvesting: 4 successive manual selections Duration of Fermentation: 3 to 5 weeks, in casks, by indigenous yeasts Production: 25,000 bottles Barrel ageing: 30 months.