A very wet drive on monday through the Côte des Blancs revealed, that nature is moving back to normality, when it comes to the grapes.
The Chardonnay-vines are close to the end of their autumn-strip. Not many withered leaves still manage to hang on to the plants along the road between villages Oiry and Vertus. The slopes above Vertus a bit less advanced, more protected from the weather than the flat and open lands along the road, I guess. In the Montagne de Reims most of the Pinot Noir-vines are still dressed up with the last reds and oranges of autumn. The difference is striking.
The funny thing is that all through 2007 the development of red grape vines - Pinot Noir and Meunier - has quite unusually been earlier than that of the white Chardonnay. Now it seems the normal order of nature has been restored.
This means, that the pruning of winter has begun in the Côte des Blancs. Not yet busy, but much bigger than what I've seen so far in the Montagne de Reims.