2020: a very early harvest, with low yields and an optimal balance between ripeness and flavor

2020: a very early harvest, with low yields and an optimal balance between ripeness and flavor

At the end of April, all of our wines were already in barrels, foudres and concrete eggs in our winery, with the malolactic fermentation finished and resting until spring. Considering the date, this is the earliest vintage we have ever experienced. The grapes reached an optimal balance between their phenolic ripeness and flavor, delivering outstanding wines, especially in the Cabernet Sauvignon from the Cuartel F4 and the Carmenère from the Cuartel G2, both planted on our Cerro Basalto. We also produce exceptional components from our selection of parcels for our AUMA wine.

In our Los Lingues vineyard, Colchagua Andes, the 2020 vintage began in February 10th and ended on March 17th. It was a vintage marked by the driest winter in Koyle's history, with only 135 mm of rainfall, followed by an early and warm spring without rain, which brought the sprouting of the vines two weeks earlier, in the first days of September. Then high temperatures came which made the flowering and fruit set process to be ahead of it’s time for the last days of October. With little water in the soil, we lived a hot and dry summer, without rains, which created small and light clusters, with a very fast and high concentration of grapes from veraison to harvest, marked by delicious intensity of flavors and good phenolic maturity. The sugar/acidity balance was mainly given by a uniform yield of the plant.

It was a year of great endeavor for the vines, but again we could appreciate how biodynamic management makes plants more sensitive to the conditions of the year, showing themselves to be more resilient to global warming. Despite the high temperatures, the vines were able to manage and balance the flavors, acidity, performance and without sunburns on its clusters. The average for Los Lingues was slightly less than 9,000 kilos per hectare.

In Paredones, Colchagua Costa, we lived an austere season in terms of rains. Although it is a recurring trend, this 2020 was the driest year since we started harvesting our first Sauvignon Blanc back in 2011 in this special vineyard of ancestral granite soils.

From spring to harvest season the temperatures were higher than the historical averages of this area, which led to an adaptation of the plant in order to reach maturity. Both factors - drought and high temperatures - produced a very extreme scenario for the vines to work. This resulted earlier phenological stages and a short maturity period. On February 28th, we started the harvest with alcohols potential between 12.5º and 13 ° and optimal acidity levels (pH between 3.05 and 3.15). In this way, we preserve the acidity and freshness that allows to express the unique minerality of these granite soils with quartz explosions.