“In 1977 I hope I go to heaven…” | 1977 Château Latour

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The Clash was probably not thinking of Bordeaux vintages when they released “1977” as the B-side to “White Riot” (nothing to do with white wine) in March 1977…

It was the first of four unusually late Bordeaux vintages that had wet winters and/or springs.

By early September the grapes were so unripe that there were warnings of an abysmal vintage to come – even worse than 1972!

But the sun came out in September – there were more hours of sunshine and the lowest rainfall for a hundred years – and the year was saved.

Château Latour’s grapes were harvested 3-17 October. As a point of comparison, the 1982 was harvested 16-30 September.

It might be the best wine of this difficult vintage, which is often the case with Latour in challenging years: The deep gravel soil (with its drainage) and the vineyards’ proximity to the Gironde estuary – only 300 metres away – mitigate against rainfall and frost.

Arden’s bottle of 1977 Latour came from an Oxfordshire auctioneer, who supplied us with the previous owner’s purchase receipt – impeccable provenance.

As 45-year-olds go, it’s a good ’un…

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