In July 2019, The Bordeaux and Bordeaux Supérieur wine producers’ syndicate voted in favour of the addition of seven varietals to the Bordeaux ‘blend’.
In an attempt to combat climate change, the vote was overwhelmingly in favour of the additions. Bordeaux et Bordeaux Supérieur grower, Christophe Piat, said ‘‘We are still a long way from planting the polygenetic, disease-resistant, hybrid varieties we need,’’ and added that Bordeaux was reaching the limits of what it could do within existing rules. This is an indication that even the natural environment cannot stay stagnant, we
need to adapt to it, not vice versa.
Bringing in modern varietals is the inevitable way forward, so why not celebrate the newcomers now?
The new varietals include:
Arinarnoa (red): a Tannat/Cabernet Sauvignon cross. Wines are deeply coloured and firmly structured.
Touriga Nacional (red): Yields are one of the lowest amongst commercial
varietals. Wines are tannic and aromatic.
Castets (red): A rare and exclusive grape varietal that may come back to life with this AOC vote. Wines are deep in colour with high tannins and high alcohol content.
Marselan (red): A Cabernet Sauvignon/Grenache cross. Wines are colourful, distinctive yet soft and smooth.
Alvarinho (white): Highly floral and fruity grape but with high acidity. The grape yield balanced wines with medium alcohol content.
Petit Manseng (white): These grapes are often left on the vine to produce late harvest wines. Naturally high in sugar and offers great versatility.
Liliorila (white): a Baroque and Chardonnay cross that, like Alvarhino. The small grapes offer powerful aromas with low acidity.
We are definitely eager to see what these new grape can bring to the Bordeaux world, things are definitely a-changin’. Once the grapes have gone through their final checkpoint, the new vines will be ready to plant in 2020/2021.
Climate change is impacting the wine world + we want to know what you think. Are these changes essential to adapting the climate or should tradition trump transformation?