Of course it is far too soon to make an assessment of the 2014 vintage in Bordeaux (the critical month is August), but it is interesting to look at the weather conditions so far to see how they may affect the final outcome. For some unfortunate growers in the northern Médoc, we know already that they will have vastly reduced crops because of the hail storm that struck on Whit Sunday (8 June). In four or five villages to the east of Lesparre-Médoc, nearly 50% of the vineyard was affected and some growers are reporting up to 100% loss. This was the critical flowering period, and hail is very effective at stripping the vines of their leaves. No leaves means no photosynthesis and therefore no crop. Fortunately for other producers, hail is usually very localised. Outside the northern Médoc, others are more upbeat about climatic conditions so far.