Spain Vintage 2013
Rioja had a difficult, challenging vintage. A cold spring developed into a summer interspersed with frequent rain. As a result there was much uneven ripening. However, things look promising as the harvest was protracted and the fruit that did ripen had plenty of time to do so, though hail at vintage time caused considerable damage (Contino picked just 10% of their crop). Those who picked before late rains made attractive, fresh and vibrant wines. Ribera del Duero had a cooler time of it over the growing season than is usual but in their case it led to good, even ripening across the board, with concentration and flavour being balanced by freshness and structure. In Priorato too, cooler conditions have led to wines with lovely fruit and freshness and the ability to age very well.