Harvest Update by New Wines of Greece
Fortunately for Greek growers and winemakers, harvests in Greece are not subject to the dramatic yearly variations, that many of their neighbors to the north experience. Greece is virtually surrounded by water with one of the largest coastlines in the world, (considering its small size and the 1200+ islands that make it up) and this moderating climatic influence is a major factor in keeping Greek vintages fairly consistent from year to year, as well as an abundance of sunshine and relatively low humidity.
Greece, the third most mountainous in Europe, is also home to a very diverse range of microclimates and soils, which are perfect for producing wines that show a true sense of place. Of course, there are always seasonal differences to contend with every year and 2015 included an atypical amount of rainfall that helped certain regions and challenged the skills of viticulturualists in others.
The main weather conditions to note for 2015 included a relatively mild winter with good levels of rainfall, resulting in a supply of water that helped nourish the vines during the year and fostered development of good leaf foliage and canopy. A mild summer included light rainfall facilitating good maturity for most grape varieties. The initial results indicate complex aromatic white wines and full-bodied red wines with relatively moderate alcohol levels and intense color. During the year, certain regions experienced additional localized rains, hailstorms and the occasional development of mildew, resulting in reduced production in certain areas, although grape quality remained unaffected. Throughout Greece, production was down by an average of 13% compared to the last 5 years.