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Chablis and Beaujolais hit by hail

Hail-damaged vines in Fleurie

On Friday, 27th May, the vineyards of Courgis and Préhy, villages that are an important part of the Chablis appellation, were hit by a massive hail storm. This was the third climatic attack on the Chablis region this year, as in April, the vines were damaged by unusually late frosts, followed by a serious hail storm on the 13th May.

Hail Storm Lilian Bauchet 28th May 2016

One of our two Chablis suppliers, Thomas Pico, from Domaine de Bois d’Yver, was particularly badly affected, as the domaine’s vines are all situated in the village of Courgis, the epicentre of the hail storm that hit on 27th May.  Thomas reports that between the two domaines that he runs, overall 25 hectares, 15 hectares of these have been destroyed between 75% -100% and the remaining 10 hectares between 0 - 30%. What also worries him is that on Saturday night (28th May), 33mm of rain fell on his vineyards and coupled with the very cold weather, this increases the chance of mildew by a huge degree. Thomas isn’t sure whether he will be able to harvest anything when the time comes in September.

The situation for growers like Thomas Pico has not been made easier by the fact that both the 2013 and 2014 vintages were half the normal size. With this shortage of wine, he has decided to stop selling any of his wine still in stock.

Hail Storm Prhy May 28th 2016

This crisis will hit many growers in Chablis and it won’t be long before you won’t be seeing very much village Chablis on restaurant wine lists; a situation that may continue for a number of years.

In the Beaujolais region, Friday night wasn’t much fun either and just over a thousand hectares were hit by a violent storm, where a corridor 3 kilometres wide and 10 kilometres long saw an intense hailstorm which destroyed most of the young growth on the vines. The appellations of Chiroubles, Morgon and Fleurie were the targets this time round. It is too early to say exactly how bad the effects are likely to be but as the flowering is just about to start, this will give a very clear picture of the real state of affairs.

Our thoughts must be with so many wine producers in these regions. Their very existence has been challenged by these natural disasters and we must all be there to wish them “Bon Courage”!

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Chablis and Beaujolais hit by hail

On Friday, 27th May, the vineyards of Courgis and Préhy, villages that are an important part of the Chablis appellation, were hit by a massive

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