The winter preceding the 2012 harvest was much drier and colder than is customary. Budburst occurred towards the third week in March under very dry conditions, with good levels of rainfall occurring in April and early May. By the end of May, the vineyards showed low vigour, caused by the combination of an extremely dry winter and cooler than normal spring. Flowering occurred between the 14th – 30th May.
Good weather continued during June and July leading to the healthy development of the vines. The vines maintained their lower than usual vigour, resulting in smaller berries, bunches and lower yields. Véraison (colouring of the grapes) was inevitably later than usual.
In mid-August, the grapes were still very low in sugar and with high levels of acidity. The vegetation however, was remarkably healthy for the time of year. The fully performing canopies and fewer grapes resulted in a significant and continuous ripening of the crop during the duration of the harvest. As a result picking started on the 20th September at Vargellas, with a small pause on the 24th for a few hours of rain, but good weather prevailed for the rest of the harvest.