Between harvesting and bottling


Fermentation du vin de Champagne

Several stages which bring out a whole bouquet of aromas

After clarification, the juices are all ready for fermentation. The grape juice now goes through different fermentation stages. Two stages are distinguished: alcoholic and malolactic fermentation. The first is a necessary step in the Champagne production process, while the second is optional, and entirely up to each winegrower. Depending on the type of wine they wish to make, they may choose to carry this stage out fully or only partially, or prefer to avoid it altogether.

Primary (alcoholic) fermentation can be carried out in oak, but usually takes place in stainless steel vats. As during the pressing stage, the juices are separated during fermentation: by cru, fraction (taille or cuvée), grape variety and year. Primary fermentation is the starting point for each Champagne’s individual style and future sensory properties to develop. During alcoholic fermentation, yeast turns the musts into wine by consuming the natural grape sugars and producing alcohol as well as floral and fruity aromas, which are typical of young wines.

During malolactic fermentation, malic acid is broken down into lactic acid by bacteria. Its primary aim is to lower the apparent acidity in the wine. It also introduces fragrant notes of brioche and butter.

At the end of fermentation, the goal is to have a wine with a maximum alcohol level of 11%. This is when the wines, which have been separated since the start of the process, will finally be able to be blended to craft the intended Champagne profile.

 So that the juice becomes Champagne  So that the juice becomes Champagne