Michel Rolland: “Bordeaux has all the components of a very good vintage”

Wednesday October 07 2015 by Vitisphere

Michel Rolland

The original flying winemaker, Michel Rolland is without a doubt the most famous winemaker in the world. Although he is a consultant for numerous wine regions worldwide, he still has firm roots in Bordeaux. Jokingly estimating the amount of grapes he has tasted in Bordeaux this month at 100 kg, he believes the region “has all the components of a very good, or even great vintage. We have been suspecting this was the case since July based on vineyard observations and even though not everything is in tanks yet, we are nearly there”. With white grapes for dry and sparkling wines already safely in the wineries, harvesting of red grapes is in full swing. 

Claiming he hadn’t seen such a level of ripeness since the 2010 vintage, Michel Rolland points out that “a very good vintage means that the grapes ripen. In my mind, ripeness has never meant over-ripeness. The worst thing you can do is pick grapes ‘just in case’. You don’t pick grapes to avoid any risks but when they’re ripe!”

Hence, his aim is to “allow grapes to ripen in the true sense of the word, i.e. balanced sugar and acidity levels and quality phenolic components for the reds…” These chemical parameters depend on many different factors: grape varieties, climate, rootstocks and soil types for instance. “Every aspect has to be taken into account to produce the best wines. It’s just like the swing in golf: you have to be in the right position, slow down then speed up your movement”, is Michel Rolland’s analogy.


[Source: Vitisphere]


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