A miraculous September saved the vintage, which had up until the harvest suffered countless setbacks.
At the beginning of May an outbreak of coulure was feared (failure of flowers to fertilise), due to the long period of bad weather; this also slowed down the flowering process. Their fears turned into reality, since all the grape varieties were affected. After a slight improvement in July, August was a complete disaster. Maturation was very slow and rot caused a lot of damage. However, a miracle was to occur in September with the arrival of an Indian summer which lasted until mid October. This remarkable weather stopped the development of rot and accelerated the ripening. By the 15th September the harvest was saved. The Cabernet Sauvignon on the left bank ripened the best: the wines dominated by this grape variety were rich, powerful, deep and balanced, with an exceptionally tannic architecture. These wines have a long cellaring capacity and will be extremely refined once they have aged sufficiently. The Merlots on the right bank and the Cabernet-Franc are the least successful, except for the elite wines of Pomerol and Saint Emilion. However, the lack of sunshine and warmth would eventually prove to be beneficial for the flavour and potential cellaring capacity of the great dry white wines. As for the sweet wines, their concentration and aromatic pureness were disappointing. Nevertheless, they are comparable to 1995 and 1996, which have proved to be very good.