2017 was poised to be an easy growing season, one with a sunny, dry and hot spring along with a picture perfect summer flowering. Everything was on track to be a perfect, painless harvest: and then August happened.
Plagued by unprecedented humidity and tropical style thunderstorms, the Champagne region was barraged by hail storms, torrential downpours, and excess water that caused severe berry bloating and slowed ripening. Things went from bad to worse when the average temperature staying above 20 degrees, which in turn created an ideal climate for rot.
Now growers in the Champagne region are set to endure one of the most complicated harvests in years, as nearly 40% of grape samples tested across all sub-regions and of all varietals were infected with rot — causing vintners to change up their traditional sorting methods.
Learn more about how rainstorms and rot are forcing Champagne to look at its sorting process.