Today marks the first day of the 2011 Champagne harvest!
With a cool and cloudy morning, temperatures expected to rise during the day, the harvest has begun!
A recent interview from France 3, with Pascal Ferat (President of the Syndicat Général des Vignerons de la Champagne, and Co-President of the Comité Interprofessionnel du Vin de Champagne) about the harvest this year.
Highlights from interview with Pascal Ferat:
Harvest start -> The majority of all starting dates will be between 19 August - 25 August. It is an exceptionally early start and definitely one of the all-time record early harvest years.
Next few days -> The next 15 days will determine if the quality of the grapes harvested will yield 2011 a vintage year or not.
Ideal climatic settings -> The ideal temperatures will be warm but not too hot during the days and cool with some freshness during the evenings.
Vintage -> In order to have a be classified vintage what is required will be cool evenings, beautiful and sunny days with no storms In respect to whether or not 2011 will be a vintage year everything seems thus far indicate that possibility as the sugar-to-acidity balance is quite exceptional; a rapid increase in sugar levels in the grapes whilst retaining a steady level of acidity too.
For further viewing of full-length interview with Pascal Ferat click here.