Champagne 2020 – setting the scene

Bottles of champagne sur lattes

In the first of three reports on the current unprecedented situation in Champagne, Tim Hall of Scala Wine, who specialises in champagne as an importer, commentator and event organiser, sketches the background. Part two, looking at the numbers beyond the deal, and part three, on whether 2020 might be a vintage year, follow later this week.

As wine regions go, Champagne enjoys and suffers a good deal of regulation. Hardly the opening line to pull you in but stay with me. One reason for its rules is that the wines take three to four years to make, often...