Having harvested all the grapes, and with the completion of the first fermentation that provides the must used in our wines and cavas, we are happy to share a summary of the 2013 harvest.
The harvest this year has been delayed, especially in comparison to the last two years. This however is not unusual as in reality a late harvest was more typical in the past. The delay was observed as far back as when the shoots and flowers came out. This, combined with the cooler summer and light rains until mid-September, has contributed to a later harvest; 10 days later than 2012. From mid-September the weather changed and we had a good end to the summer with perfect temperatures and hardly any rain. All of this has led to the slow maturing of the grapes.
We started the harvest with the earlier grape varietals; with Pinot Noir, of which we produce a small quantity for our Cava rose, on 16th August, 6 days later than the previous year.
Given the lower temperatures and regular rain in mid-summer, the other varietals used to produce our cava ripened more slowly and it was more difficult to achieve the higher level of alcohol required. This year has called for patience but we have been meticulous, achieving an incredible balance in the acidity (an average of 7.5 grams per liter of tartaric acid) and abv (an average of 10.8 º for the base wines in the cava.
The big difference versus previous years has been in the later varietals, above all in Xarello used to produce cava, which we collected virtually 20 days later than in 2012. Also the Parellada varietal, which we use to make D.O. Penedès Wines, has been able to mature peacefully on the vines until the end of September.
In relation to the production of our red wines, it has been a fantastic harvest. The slow ripening, given the lack of extreme temperatures, has meant that the phenolic maturing of the skins was fully completed.
So we have been able to harvest our three varietals; Syrah, Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon, which have imparted a lot of colour, tannins and a wealth of aromas.
As always at Oriol Rossell, we finished the harvest collecting the Xarello in ‘Les Cerveres’ vineyard, one of our oldest vineyards. This year it was on 3rd October, at the optimum time.
In summary, it has been a long and complex harvest but one which we believe will result in some great wines and cavas.