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See details of the wines declared or bottled from the year 2014:

2014 Vintage

The relatively cool summer with balanced maturations was reminiscent of 2007. At the beginning of the vintage there was cause for optimism as the grapes displayed all the features of a very good year in the making: soft skins, full berries and balanced sugars and acidity. The Touriga Franca, was looking very promising. After picking some of the finest parcels of Touriga Nacional under mostly dry and sunny conditions, unsettled weather was to delay the conclusion of the Franca’s ripening cycle and consequently this variety did not quite fulfil its full potential. 2014 is thus very much a Touriga Nacional year.

Viticultural and Weather Conditions

After a mainly wet autumn, the winter was mild but very wet, with 44% more rainfall than normal. Although March was exceptionally dry, the accumulated rainfall by the end of the month was very close to average levels.

Bud break was one of the earliest on record, having taken place 18 days sooner than average. April was exceptionally hot, with 31.9ºc registered at Pinhão. May was also hot and dry and flowering took place two weeks earlier than usual under favorable conditions.

June showed considerable oscillations in temperature but thanks to vine development being two weeks ahead of normal with a well-developed canopy, the temperature spikes of the month did not damage the bunches.

Maturation studies showed that sugar readings developed well at the end of August and beginning of September. Thanks to cool summer weather, acidity levels in the berries were ideal and everything pointed to an excellent vintage.

From what seemed like a perfect position to be in at the beginning of the vintage, the arrival of rain made for a challenging scenario. From September 7th, above-average rain fell in the Douro Superior and ten consecutive days of rain then followed throughout the valley between the the 14th and the 23rd. However in a region that is over 90km long with an average annual rainfall that varies from 1,000mm to 400mm, some very localized parts of the Douro were in fact much less affected and it was possible to make some very fine wines, particularly from Touriga Nacional grapes.

Winemaker's Overview

Perhaps the most surprising aspect of this vintage was the pockets of the Douro that were less affected by the rain, highlighting the amazing diversity of microclimates of the region. Whereas very unsettled conditions were the norm during the harvest in most parts of the Douro, some localised parts of the valley were much less affected and this was particularly noticeable in areas of the Douro Superior such as Quinta dos Canais and other vineyards in the proximity. The wines made here were by far the best wines of the year. In such a diverse wine region it is certain some real gems will have been made as the grapes were in such lovely condition at the outset.

Charles Symington, Douro, October 2014



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