A combination of spring frost and an extreme summer heatwave have left Italy’s wineries looking at one of the smallest vintages in living memory.
Early reports have put this year’s crop at just 38.9m hectolitres, smaller than initial estimates when picking started, and the smallest since 1947.
Recent figures from the Associazione Enologi Enotecnici Italiani (association of Italian Oenologists) Italy’s 2017 vintage, meanwhile, estimate that this year is 28% – or two billion bottles – down on 2016.
Regions from Piemonte to Sicily were affected by the same spring frosts that hit much of Europe. The remaining crop was then reduced further by the ‘Lucifer’ heatwave, whose scorching summer temperatures caused drought in many regions and reduced berry sizes dramatically.