When I last time visited Nathalie and Hubert in December (I love to go to the Champagne towards the end of the year!), they asked me to put those pictures of the 2012 harvest on the website.
The pictures have been taken in September 2012. One week of harvest a under grey but rain-free sky, picking Chardonnay grapes of the Côte des Blancs. Every acre of the small and dispersed vineyards is harvested by hand, with the help of hundreds of hands. A very fast and concentrated harvest, typical for regions that cultivate only one grape variety. Despite the differences between terroirs, almost all grapes are ripe at the same time. Even more, as only “low” maturity levels a required to produce sparkling wines, in order to preserve acidity and fresh aromas in the grapes.