Almería grapes high quality despite drought

White grapes. Photo credit: Pixabay

Despite a 25 per cent reduction in output, the Almería wine harvest is wrapping up successfully, with the first 2023 whites already being bottled. Weather conditions towards the end of the season were optimal, meaning that the whites hitting the shelves are high quality. 

The Agrarian Association of Young Farmers of Almería (ASAJA) has confirmed in a release that drought conditions have reduced the province’s overall production of wine grapes by 25 per cent. Of Almeria’s 1,100 hectares of vineyards, those on arid swaths of land fared the worst, having been saved by the rains that arrived in late-May. 

Low Output, High Quality

However, dryer conditions in autumn, towards the end of the growing season, meant that the resulting grapes were of “exceptional” quality, according to the release, as Almería’s white wine grapes favour late-season conditions of low humidity. Currently, this season’s first batch of whites is being bottled and marketed just in time for the holiday season. Meanwhile, double-fermentation wines, which require a longer maturation process, are being introduced to their barrels where they will ferment over the coming months and take on the flavour subtleties that give them their desired complexity. 

ASAJA-Almería president Adoración Blanque notes that while Almería wines may not be as famous as those from other Spanish wine regions, they are high-quality and desirable nonetheless. 

“We always recommend the consumption of wines from our land which have nothing to envy of other more popular appellations of origin,” Blanque said. 

Unprecedented Drought Conditions

The 2023 growing season has been marked by unprecedented drought conditions throughout Spain, affecting growers in the communities of Catalonia and Andalucía the most. Due to the drought, states of emergency were declared in 24 municipalities, and officials imposed strict water usage limits on growers. According to estimates by La Semana Vitivinícola, Spain’s grape harvest volume declined by 12 per cent in 2023 from the previous year. 

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Cole Sinanian

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