The vintage chart and harvest reports provided by the Wine Scholar Guild gives you the ranking for every French wine region and vintage from 2000 to today.
Andrew Jefford, award-winning wine journalist for Decanter Magazine and author of twelve books on wine including The New France has compiled information and written the vintage charts starting with the 2013 vintage. He is also updating information for the vintages prior to 2013.
Last updated: April 25th 2019
Languedoc-Roussillon Vintage Chart
|2017||Drink/Cellar||A cold winter was followed by unusually warm weather in February, March and early April; then, most unusually for Languedoc, frost struck the vineyards (though Roussillon was spared, and in the end had a larger-than-usual harvest). Aude, Hérault and Gard were all badly hit, with crop levels down by 20-30% (around 1 million hl less than usual), and with IGP vineyards worse hit than AOP vineyards (which mainly lie on the hills, and therefore enjoy better air drainage). Summer was then bright and sunny, and the surviving crop provided an early harvest, with some Muscats being picked as early as the end of July. Quality was good, rising to excellent in the Roussillon (where more sea breezes and less tramontane wind than usual helped temper the heat and minimise grape dessication).|
|2016||Drink/Cellar||After a mild but dry winter which provoked early budburst, spring was cool enough to slow down the cycle. A shortage of water, though, made itself felt from spring onwards: 2016 was the driest season in Languedoc since 1944. A small crop of at least 10 per cent below normal was the result, while the Pic St Loup crop was hit further by a catastrophic hail storm in August. In general, conditions were warm and dry with nights cool enough to retain freshness, and quality (for those growing the well-adapted varieties generally specified by AOC rules) is high.|
|2015||Drink||Winter and early spring were cold and very wet. But warm, dry weather took over after that, and from mid-May onwards, conditions were unusually hot, especially in July. At that point, some of the vines were shutting down. Violent storms ensued on August 13th which were generally of great benefit to the vines, though quantities varied between 24 in/600 mm in Terraces du Larzac to under 2 in/50 mm elsewhere. Warm weather resumed on August 20th, and harvest got underway for the whites; reds were picked in early September. Torrential but localised rain on September 8th in eastern Languedoc spared most growers. The end of September and October provided beautiful harvest conditions for later pickers, and in general, this ended as a good vintage for both Languedoc and Roussillon, producing fresh whites and fragrant, amply constituted and lushly fruity reds with fine ageing potential.|
|2014||Drink||Languedoc-Roussillon suffered its driest winter for 20 years, and a warm, dry spring then followed. Drought stress meant the vines set a lower yield than normal. Hailstorms on July 6th caused crop losses in La Clape, Minervois and Corbières, and summer then turned humid and stormy. The vine’s cycle was well advanced, though, so those unaffected by hail who were able to harvest early made good wines, including many in Roussillon. However colossal rains and flooding hit Languedoc on September 17th and 18th, and then again between September 28th and 30th seriously compromising the harvest in later picking zones (like Pic St Loup) and for those Languedoc growers reliant on later-ripening Grenache and Mourvèdre. It was, by contrast, a good year in Roussillon.|
|2013||Drink||Cold, wet spring continued through abnormally cold June. Flowering delayed by 3 weeks. Grenache suffered coulure, reducing its yields. Summer generally warm, not hot, with cool nights. Late-ripening red varieties yielded best results: Syrah, Carignan, Mourvèdre & Cabernet. Grenache Blanc, Picpoul, Roussanne & Chardonnay do well. Wines overall tend to have lower alcohol, higher acidities; best have structure for aging. Roussillon particularly successful. Total harvest volume close to recent norm across L-R.|
|2012||Drink||Weather extremes, variation across L-R. Very hot spring, very dry summer. Wide disparities in outcomes. Grenache, Syrah profited from conditions, excellent Corbières, Fitou, La Clape, Terrasses du Larzac. Weaker dry whites: Picpoul, Sauvignon Blanc. In Roussillon, Tramontane wind strips fruit from vines, a rare occurrence. Healthy reds from small berries, excellent Roussillon villages. Generally not for long cellaring. Banyuls, Maury, Rivesaltes stand out. Lowest recorded overall harvest, down 40% from average.|
|2011||Drink||Season commenced with good water reserves in Languedoc. Dry, warm to hot spring. Cool, humid summer, attacks of mildew, oidium. Improved conditions, windy, for harvest. Heterogeneous ripening, fruity & fresh wines to drink young, though the best reds have also aged very well. In Roussillon, hot, dry spring offset by May rain. Colder early summer, hot & humid August with hail on 5th damaging 1,000 ha in Les Aspres. Winds played positive drying role in September. Successful & healthy global results: aromatic wines with defining acidity. Promising VDNs. First vintage in many without shortfall in volume.|
|2010||Drink||Generally hot, dry year. Warm spring without rain, favorable conditions for flowering. Extremely hot July, cooler late August regulated maturation. In Roussillon, cooler summer nights until mid-August. Roussillon reds, from small berries, have good color, substance. Severely reduced harvest: 30% below average. Outstanding harvest of dense, structured wines.|
|2009||Drink||Relatively humid & wet for L-R. Rainy April in Languedoc. Typical summer sunshine, very hot August accelerates ripening. Roussillon saw warm spring & good conditions for flowering. Advanced ripening, similar to 2003, small crop with irregular quality. Full whites & reds, low acidities, high alcohol. Uneven phenolic maturities.|
|2008||Drink||In Languedoc, hot summer without rain, abundant sunshine; ripening slowed by cooler nights. More varied weather in Roussillon, beneficial May rain. Staggered harvest depending on variety, zone. Heterogeneous results: fresh, expressive reds & whites with sound acidity.|
|2007||Drink||Season began with dry conditions, rectified partially by spring rain. Little summer rain in Languedoc, Roussillon even less. Reduced harvest of generally healthy, concentrated wines, notably reds of Corbières, Pic Saint-Loup, whites of Limoux.|
|2006||Past peak||Very hot June, precocious flowering. Heat continued through summer, with no precipitation, nearing water stress. Rain in September restored balance in Languedoc, enabling healthy harvest of sound maturity. Corbières, Fitou performed well. Budding delayed in Roussillon, rainless May to September. Very hot July, cooler August. Challenging harvest, best wines resulted from careful selection of ripe fruit. Uneven ripening, phenolic maturity.|
|2005||Past peak||Beneficent growing season with balanced temperatures & rainfall in Languedoc. Many locales attained maturity by late August. Wines with attractive fruit, equilibrium; fine tannins in reds. Roussillon recovered from early oidium & harvested healthy grapes, especially fine Carignan. A rival to 2001’s quality, perhaps a notch lower in red.|
|2004||Past peak||Year of seasonal norms without extremes across L-R. Typical, hot summer carried on to Indian summer in October. Healthy fruit, optimal & sound ripening unless picked too early. Corbières shines. Roussillon dependable across all types, a step below 2003 in red.|
|2003||Past peak||Water-retaining soils, higher elevations coped better with heat wave. Hot summer days & nights stressed vulnerable vines. Long, extended, reduced harvest. Conditions favored Grenache: deep, rich fruit. Carignan, Mourvèdre also withstood heat; Bordeaux varieties struggled. Often dense reds, heavy whites with elevated alcohol, low acidities for early drinking. Roussillon benefitted from cooling of sea, mountains & winds to produce excellent dry reds, Banyuls, Maury.|
|2002||Past peak||Dry spring, cool July, uneven August hindered maturation & delayed harvest. Heavy rainstorm affecting Gard & Hérault on 9-10 September. Lack of substance, concentration. Roussillon generally more successful than Languedoc in dry wines & VDN.|
|2001||Past peak||Beneficent season across L-R. Ideal flowering. High sun hours, typical heat, no rain from mid-July to mid-September. A benchmark year for reds, deeply colored & tannic, suitable for cellaring. Roussillon villages, Banyuls, Collioure stand out. Many place this as one of the finest modern vintages in L-R.|
|2000||Past peak||Largely sun-filled, dry spring continued into summer. Brief cold snap in July in Languedoc. Fine hot weather in August/September, enhancing maturities. Harvesting in good weather, large crop overall. Very successful reds possessing fruit, balance.|
Methodology: This report has been compiled utilizing multiple authoritative sources including regional trade associations, experts in each region, wine producers, academic studies, leading journalists, and the editor’s personal notes.
Acknowledgements: E. Gabay MW (Provence); Hugel family (Alsace); D. Markham (Bordeaux); K. McAuliffe (Rhône); M. Stubbs MW (Languedoc-Roussillon).
Editor’s comment: This chart is intended to serve as a reliable guide for professionals, educators and collectors. Judgments as to the quality, longevity and current maturity of a given vintage are by definition simplified assessments describing the average profile of the year. There will always be individual wines which surpass, or fail to reach, the overall standard, or which may have a shorter or longer life than their peers. Last, these evaluations are not fixed and permanent; rather, they will be revised as needed to reflect the wines as they age in bottle.
LEARN MORE ABOUT LANGUEDOC-ROUSSILLON WINES:
PiedmontMay 19 - May 24, 2019
TuscanyMay 26 - May 31, 2019
BourgogneMay 19 - May 24, 2019
BourgogneJun 02 - Jun 07, 2019
ChampagneJun 11 - Jun 15, 2019
BordeauxJun 16 - Jun 21, 2019
LoireJun 23 - Jun 28, 2019
AlsaceOct 20 - Oct 25, 2019
ChampagneOct 28 - Nov 01, 2019