The 2010 season was affected by extremely variable weather, finally producing a very classic vintage and one of the smallest crops of these last 20 years.
The winter was particularly harsh in Burgundy with very severe frost during the third week of December and temperatures dropping down to -20°C (-4°F) in some parts of the vineyard.
In February rainfall combined with snow hit the whole Burgundy area.
It was a true winter bringing the cold with snow and rain.
Spring moved in for good in March/April together with rising temperatures, even above average. Rainfall was also abundant all over Burgundy.
The first bud bursts occurred around mid-April in the earliest parts and then spread over the whole vineyard.
The coolness of May tended to slow down the growth of the vine.
The differences between the Chablis and Beaujolais vineyards were noticeable.
In June, with temperatures becoming milder and even above average, the vine resumed its growth.
By mid-June the half-flowering stage was reached in the more advantageously exposed areas. These dates were similar to those of 2008.
In general July and August remained rather cool and rainy with low temperatures. One could see flower failure and «millerandage» (small berries) throughout the vineyard, which is a quality factor but considerably reduces the crop volume.
Maturing took place slowly, followed by bright, dry, windy and mild weather in September which ensured good ripening.
The juice of the berries progressively became concentrated.
At Joseph Drouhin's, the harvest started on September 23rd and lasted for a good fortnight..
Style of the wines:
The whites were vinified without any difficulty. According to the appellations, the malolactic fermentations spread over several months.
Now the wines show an attractive golden and shining colour, with a slightly light green hue.
The aromas are well defined and neat with floral touches. They offer good purity of taste, a clear-cut impression as well as a nice mineral texture.
In Chablis, the wines reveal a good structure with ripe aromas but also a nice acidity level.
The reds were also vinified harmoniously. We managed to keep a good proportion of whole bunches in a great number of cuvées.
The malolactic fermentations were late and as they lasted over a long period, the wines acquired fullness and complexity. They display a neat and bright ruby-red colour.
The wines are elegant, long on the aftertaste and with ample character. 2010 will certainly provide some great wines, in particular in the Côte de Nuits ... the only regret concerns the low yield of the crop.
Frédéric J. DROUHIN