Heavy frosts that set in earlier this month could have damaged up to a third of the crops in some vineyards, with temperatures falling as low as -5 degrees centigrade in some areas.
Worst affected by the drop in temperatures are regions such as the Côte des Blancs, with villages like Avize, Cramant and Chouilly taking a particularly harsh beating. There was more widespread damage in the Côte des Bar as temperatures there fell to -5 degrees centigrade.
Chardonnay was the most vulnerable vines, with two or three leaves already growing in some well-exposed vineyards. This has led to some damage in the low-lying areas close to the Marne River, where chardonnay is widely grown, as well as having an impact on some Pinot Noir parcels.
Moët & Chandon winemaker Benoît Gouez said that between seven per cent and eight per cent of this year’s crop had potentially been lost. Olivier Bonville of Franck Bonville, a grower based in Avize told Decanter: “Frost affected about 30 per cent of our vineyard. After the warm temperatures in March the vines were already showing two leaves and we were also hit by frost in the previous week on the night of 12th and 13th April when temperatures fell to – 3 degrees centigrade.”
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