Champagne The uniqueness of champagne is apparent right from the harvest itself. No harvesting machines are permitted, and everything is picked by hand because it is essential the the grapes get to the press in perfect condition. Rather than the hods used elsewhere, pickers carry small baskets to ensure that the grapes are not too crushed. Presses are set up in the heart of the vineyards to shorten the time the grapes are transported. Why is such care taken? Because champagne is a white wine made for the most part from o black grape, the Pinot Noir, and it is essential that the colorless juice should not be stained by contact with the grape skins.
Pressing has to take place as quickly as possible and in such a way as to collect the juice from different concentric parts of each fruit one after the other. This explains the particular shape of squashing the grapes and to facilitate the circulation of the juice, the grapes are piled over a very wide area but not very deeply. The skins of the harvested grapes must never be damaged.
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