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Which wine lover has never dreamed of taking part in the grape harvest? Tough work, but somehow really rewarding and wholesome.

If you can’t actually get a job harvesting there are a few people in Champagne who offer the chance to at least have a go for an hour or so to get a feel of what it’s like and have a lot of fun into the bargain.

The trick of course is being here in Champagne at just the right time and that’s hard to predict until a few weeks beforehand.

In Champagne the harvest has traditionally been in mid-September but warmer weather in recent years has meant that the harvest has started and finished earlier and earlier; it started in August last year, the first time that’s happened in over a century!

This year, mind you, Spring has been relatively cool and the vines are not growing like wild-fire as they did in 2011, so we seem to be on-track for anther mid September harvest.

If you’re tempted by the prospect of getting into the vineyard with your secateurs and basket then e-mail This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to inquire about accommodation and a harvest day-out. Meanwhile here’s a video of Yvonne showing you how to do it: