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Loire 2011 at Ten Years: Moelleux & Liquoreux Wines

Loire 2011 at Ten Years: Moelleux and Liquoreux Wines

You might imagine, after a collection of questionable whites (albeit with moments of brilliance) and a similar cohort of rather ordinary reds, that we would limp into this third and final report on the sweet wines of 2011 with an air of despondency. After all, with such a disastrous and topsy-turvy growing season, what hope could there be for those holding out to make a sweet wine?

Well, as it turned out, every hope in the world, although at the time it was not crystal clear that this was the correct path to take (is it ever?). Indeed, flurries of rain starting in late August prompted some to pick and focus on dry wines, both in the Anjou region and in Vouvray. Others, however, held on, hoping for the development of botrytis followed by the drier conditions required to concentrate the fruit.

Loire 2011

And it turned out this gamble paid off. The conditions held, remaining largely warm and dry, and leaving the fruit on the vine for a late-harvest sweet wine allowed the phenolic ripeness (which was lagging behind after that cool and drizzly summer) and acidity levels (which were still high, for the same reason) to catch up with the climbing concentrations of sugars.

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