If we would like to use a metaphor, the accordion would perfectly represent the 2023 weather trend.
The hot and dry winter led to fewer flowers on the vines. The early budding and return of the cold temperatures leaded to some damages on the buds of the early varieties.
The torrential rainfalls that – sadly – affected our region (fortunately without creating damages to our vineyards) and the cold in May impacted the fruit set and the following temperatures rise literally made the vegetation burst.
Heat summations announce a delay of the harvest of around 10 days compared to 2022, but the good temperature variations (between night and day) in mid-August accelerated the process. The harvest of the vineyards in Castel San Pietro Terme started the 24th August; the news for this year is the harvest time: semi-nocturnally, to preserve the quality and avoid stress to the grapes because of the scorching day temperatures.
Early varieties such as Pinot and Chardonnay are the first to arrive at the winery, with slightly lower quantities than 2022, but with an excellent acidity and pH values. The aromas are good, as confirmed when tasting the Sauvignon grapes, now almost ready for harvest.
Overall, for this harvest we expect a fall of the quantities, as in many Italian regions, but very interesting for the quality since acidity remained, pH is not high. And if we have a good month of September, we will definitely harvest great Sangiovese grapes, which are the “beating heart” of the Umberto Cesari’s production.