The November Edition | The Role of Lees in Champagne

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This month we look at one of the most important aspects of champagne production and its affect on the palate - ageing on lees. Champagne lovers are aware that after secondary fermentation, the yeast; after doing a stellar job of eating all the sugar and producing CO2, form a layer along the base of the bottle. From here something very interesting happens in a process known as Autolysis (Greek word for ‘self-splitting’) in which enzymes break down the yeast cells and release a range of compounds (in the protein department) that creates some of the most desirable palate features in champagne.