FINE WINE Fine Wine GUIDE THE FINER THINGS IN LIFE Wine and Food Diary of Giles MacDonogh

The Fruity Wines of May

Written by Giles MacDonogh

The Fruity Wines of May


It’s been a month already; a month of cold and rain, and not just here in Britain, France too. Hail has struck in Chablis and Champagne, seriously reducing the crop in both, and mildew seems to be on the march elsewhere. The mood in Bordeaux is bleak: people are speaking of reducing the area under vines by twenty percent. Prices are falling (they were already low). The only type of Bordeaux which seems to be prospering is white.  

We had a nice, simple 2023 Bordeaux from Waitrose a few days ago: lots and lots of juicy red fruits, but a very long way from the subtle glories of the crus classés from the Médoc, St Emilion, Pomerol or the Graves. We didn’t finish it and two days later it was possibly even better. It was almost certainly mostly Merlot, which accounts for 66% of the black grapes planted in Bordeaux (Cabernet Sauvignon is just 22%). These growers get less than €2 for their wine. Perhaps one answer is to allow them to write ‘Bordeaux Merlot’ on their labels? There must be many Merlot-lovers out there who are still unaware that most red Bordeaux is Merlot-based? 

About the author

Giles MacDonogh

Leave a Comment

Pin It on Pinterest

error: Content is protected !!