19 July, 2000

First report on vendange is good

Pinot Meunier ved Loisy-en-Brie, juli 2005.

The grapes are pretty. We entirely agree, but it is always great to hear that the authorities in their first, official reports share your humble opinion. After all based on just a few hectares, a tiny drop in the immense sea of wine in this region.

But the CIVC (Comité Interprofessionnel du vin de Champagne), the official speaking tube of the united champagnebusiness, describes the average picture at the moment like this:

  • Plenty but normal amounts of grapes.
  • Pretty and wellplaced berries.
  • Expected vendange between September 15th and 20th.
The vendange 2004 was so extensive, that even retirees could not think of any other vendange to equal the immense quantities seen. This year the wine carries more moderate amounts of grapes.

Average quantities
In average the CIVC expect around 14.000 kilos of grapes per hectare, which is just a little more than necessary, since you are entitled to sell 12.000 kiloes of grapes per hectare of land. Last year the plants carried around 25.000 amazing kilos per hectare.

So far what will develop into this years crop, has made well.

  • The dangerous frost in the spring has only killed a very minor part, says the CIVC.
  • The widespread drought in the spring has only had minor impacts for the wine, that normally does not demand much when it comes to water. The wine has managed with what it could find in the underground chalk layer, that sucks the water like a sponge.
How deep the threats of the summer - different diseases, pests and hailstorms - will dig into the potential, is still to early to talk about.

According to the CIVC mildew has been seen, but not yet on a level that can not be treated. Also botrytis has been observed.

Our Pinot Meunier-grapes at Loisy-en-Brie develops nicely.

Everything can change
Much - not to say all - can still change. The informations from the CIVC only states, what can be said at the moment. A heatwawe at the same level as in 2003 for instance can speed up the date of the vendange with several weeks in a short while.

This first report from Champagne is different from that from the rest of France. There the winegrowers have started to prepare themselves for another huge harvest.

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