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After Erratic 2018 Weather, Bold Confidence in New Bordeaux Vintage

For some growers who made it through a soggy spring and surprise hail, the early word is that the 2018 vintage will be one for the record books. 

A 2016 Château La Lagune tasting during a previous en primeur.

A 2016 Château La Lagune tasting during a previous en primeur.

Photographer: GEORGES GOBET/AFP

Next week, global wine attention turns to Bordeaux, as thousands of merchants and journalists descend on the region for the annual spring ritual, en primeur.

During the hectic Monday to Friday taste-fest, the pace is frenetic. We all rush from château to château to swirl, sip, and spit wines from the 2018 vintage that are quietly aging in oak barrels in dark, cold cellars. After evaluating quality and scribbling notes, we’ll move on to the next appointment, picking up local gossip and trading impressions of the vintage where we can.