Posted: 08 Sep 2010 04:04 AM PDT
Some of you may know that as well as writing about champagne and sourcing champagne for anyone who wants to discover some of the terrific, but lesser-known makers, I also run exclusive weekends here for small groups of champagne lovers.
Two weekends coming up are ones that you won't want to miss out on.
You'll meet the local champagne makers, be treated to delicious champagne dinners, including of course some superb champagnes, and discover a side of Champagne that most people never dream is there
The first weekend is from November 12th -14th when we'll be visiting the Reims Wine Festival which is an experience in itself, but we've got much more planned for you on this amazing weekend.
There are only 4 places left so please contact me ASAP to get full details and to grab your spot .
The second weekend is in December ( 10th-12th) to visit the fabulous Habits de Lumières display in Epernay when, up and down the Avenue de Champagne, all the famous champagne houses are dressed in lights.
10 places only on this exclusive event, so why not treat you and your partner to a magical Christmas break here in Champagne?
Again, full details are available by e-mailing me at firstname.lastname@example.org
I look forward to seeing you soon
Posted: 08 Sep 2010 02:31 AM PDT
There are harvesting teams to finalise, presses to prepare and a hundred and one other jobs that need doing in order to be ready in time.
The actual dates for the Harvest are due to be announced today by the CIVC. A starting date is given to every community in the entire Champagne region.
They are also given a date, 21 days later, by which they must finish harvesting.
Within this window the individual vignerons in each community can choose when to start and finish according to the condition of the grapes in their individual plots.
Speaking to a few producers back in August when we had about three weeks of wet and frankly, quite cold weather, many of them were saying that the Harvest wouldn't get under way until the last week of September.
Then, Hey Presto!
Right at the end of the month and into the first week of September ( ironically just when everyone was going back to work) we had a period of superbly warm and sunny weather which speeded up everything in the vineyards and brought the Harvest forward by at least a week, if not more.
Both white and black grapes can be affected, but it's the Pinot Meunier vineyards, particularly in La Vallée de La Marne, that seem to be suffering the most.
You can see what happens in these pictures. The grapes turn mouldy and rot as they hang on the vine.
From now on it's a balancing act for the vignerons.
"Should I harvest as soon as possible to avoid the risk of the rot getting worse?"
"But will the sugar level be high enough if I harvest too soon?"
"What's the weather forecast for the next week?"
All these decisions will have to be made in the next couple of weeks and you can follow the Harvest as it unfolds by coming back regularly to www.debateabuble.com
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