The small village of Chablis and its hillsides, known worldwide for its white Chardonnay wine, were only able to save a small part of their vineyards, 'les Grands Crus'.
Losses of 50% (which reach as high as 70 or 80% on some parcels) are expected by the winegrowers Unions (BIVP) after the frost. The annual haul of 350,000 hectoliters, the equivalent of 45.9 million bottles, will drop to 150,000 hectoliters this year.
Six months on from the biting frost, the autumn harvest has arrived. While the crop was relatively meagre, the Defaix were happy to have any grapes at all to harvest, even if the cost of frost control techniques far outweighs the profits.
The vines which the Defaix were able to protect will have yields close to 70% of a normal year, a big win for the growers, but the vines of 'Lechet', 'des Lys' or 'Vaillon' suffered much more.