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Huge jump in demand for Provence rosé wines

Provence wine looks forward to another successful year as the new 2014 vintages make their way to the UK and US.

The 2014 vintage yielded 1,385,500 hectolitres across the Côtes de Provence, Coteaux d’Aix-en-Provence and Coteaux Varois en Provence appellations, compared to 1,197,000 hectolitres in 2013. 89% of this went towards the production of 165 million bottles of AOP Provence rosé, which are now making their way to UK shores in tandem with the welcome change in the weather.

Last year Provence rosé exports to UK jumped by 60% in volume and 58% in value, and the yields from this vintage will allow the CIVP to continue to supply its existing markets and aid the renewed growth in exports for the year ahead, notably in the US, which saw a +35% increase in exports volumes of Provence rosé between 2013 and 2014.

Winter 2013/14 was mild, with sufficient rain to establish good groundwater for the growing season, and Provence then experienced a hot, dry spring that resembled an early summer and lasted until the beginning of June. From mid-June a coolness set in, and Provence was swept by the irregular localised storms that are characteristic of the region. The end of August and September saw sunny skies and temperatures worthy of an ‘Indian Summer’, allowing the grapes to mature fully. Localised rainstorms were also noted during this period, and cool night-time temperatures favoured phenolic maturity.

Harvest began around 20 August and was completed by the end of October. In the winery the quality of the 2014 vintage resulted in bright, complex and aromatic rosés that clearly express the typicities of the different terroirs; the style for which Provence has become famous. Although the region produces predominantly rosé, the vintage has also produced full-bodied, structured, generous reds, and herbal, rounded whites with white-stoned fruit characteristics.

Rosé accounts for 30% of French wine consumption, and Provence has asserted its position as a global rosé wine leader, producing 39% of AOP rosé wines from France and 5.6% of the world’s rosé wines.

3 April 2015 - Felicity Murray The Drinks Report, editor