Sparkling wine is a wine with significant levels of carbon dioxide in it, making it fizzy. While the phrase commonly refers to champagne, EU countries legally reserve that term for products exclusively produced in the Champagne region of France. Sparkling wine is usually either white or rosé, but there are examples of red sparkling wines such as...
Sparkling wine is a wine with significant levels of carbon dioxide in it, making it fizzy. While the phrase commonly refers to champagne, EU countries legally reserve that term for products exclusively produced in the Champagne region of France. Sparkling wine is usually either white or rosé, but there are examples of red sparkling wines such as the Italian Brachetto, Bonarda and Lambrusco, and the Australian sparkling Shiraz. The sweetness of sparkling wine can range from very dry brut styles to sweeter doux varieties (French for 'hard' and 'soft', respectively).
The sparkling quality of these wines comes from its carbon dioxide content and may be the result of natural fermentation, either in a bottle, as with the traditional method, in a large tank designed to withstand the pressures involved (as in the Charmat process), or as a result of simple carbon dioxide injection in some cheaper sparkling wines.
In EU countries, the word "champagne" is reserved by law only for sparkling wine from the Champagne region of France. The French terms Mousseux and Crémant refer to sparkling wine not made in the Champagne region, such as Blanquette de Limoux produced in Southern France. Sparkling wines are produced around the world, and are often referred to by their local name or region, such as Prosecco, Franciacorta, Trento DOC, Oltrepò Pavese Metodo Classico and Asti from Italy (the generic Italian term for sparkling wine being spumante), Espumante from Portugal, Cava from Spain, and Cap Classique from South Africa. Sparkling wines have been produced in Central and Eastern Europe since the early 19th-century. "Champagne" was further popularised in the region, late in the century, when József Törley started production in Hungary using French methods, learned as an apprentice in Reims. Törley has since become one of the largest European producers of sparkling wine. The United States is a significant producer of sparkling wine today, with producers in numerous states. Recently, production of sparkling wine has re-started in the United Kingdom after a long hiatus.
Champagne (/ʃæmˈpeɪn/, French: [ʃɑ̃paɲ]) is a French sparkling wine. The term Champagne can be used as a generic term for sparkling wine, but in the EU and some countries it is illegal to label any product Champagne unless it came from the Champagne wine region of France and is produced under the rules of the appellation. This alcoholic drink is produced from specific types of grapes grown in the Champagne region following rules that demand, among other things, specific vineyard practices, sourcing of grapes exclusively from designated places within the Champagne region, specific grape-pressing methods and secondary fermentation of the wine in the bottle to cause carbonation.
The grapes Pinot noir, Pinot meunier, and Chardonnay are primarily used to produce almost all Champagne, but small amounts of Pinot blanc, Pinot gris, Arbane, and Petit Meslier are vinified as well. Only these specific grapes grown according to appellation rules on designated plots of land within the appellation may be used to make Champagne.
Champagne became associated with royalty in the 17th, 18th, and 19th centuries. The leading manufacturers made efforts to associate their Champagnes with nobility and royalty through advertising and packaging, which led to its popularity among the emerging middle class.
French sparkling wine produced outside the Champagne Wine Region.
Cava is the Spanish sparkling wine made according to the traditional method, or also known as Méthode Champenoise. Cava is protected by the Protected Designation of Origin Cava.
Made according to the Traditional Method (also known as Méthode Champenoise or Méthode traditionelle) that it shares with Champagne, cava requires a double fermentation process. The first fermentation, also known as alcoholic fermentation, takes place mainly in large stainless steel tanks with temperature control. The second fermentation will take place inside the same bottle that will then reach the consumer.
The main grape varieties used in the production of cava are white grapes: Macabeo, Xarel lo and Parellada. Other varieties such as Chardonnay or Pinot Noir and, to a lesser extent, Subirat parent (Malvasía) are also used. For the rosé cavas the varieties of black grapes Garnacha, Monastrell and Trepat are used.
Due to its organoleptic characteristics, cava hardly requires dosage. The dosage or expedition liquor is usually made up of wine and sugars with which the small amount of liquid lost during the disgorging process is filled. There are many options and possible variations in the exact composition of each producer's liquor de expedition. The amount of sugar will determine the type of resulting cava, Cava Brut Nature is the driest and is made without any added sugars (0-3 grams per liter of natural sugars).
Sparkling wines made in Spain.
Aguja wines are young, non-sparkling wines that must be consumed in the same year, in order to fully appreciate their freshness and the charm of their bubbles.
A "needle" wine is not a cava, nor a sparkling wine. It is one that, due to its varietal origin or its production, preserves a small amount of carbon dioxide from the fermentation of sugars. When you open a bottle, this gas is released in the form of a bubble, but without producing foam.
The grape varieties used to make sparkling wines are not special or different from other wines. If they are made from authorized grape varieties, that, due to the special practices of their production. For whites, it is common to find the same varieties as for cava (Macabeo, Parellada and Xarel.lo), while for rosés, Garnacha, Syrah, Tempranillo, Merlot, etc ... There are quite a few varieties with which make these wines. Sometimes the wine is sweeter and may have been made with Muscat grapes for example.
Sparkling wine can also be aerated. This occurs when part of the carbon dioxide contained in sparkling wine has been added.
In order to enjoy a sparkling wine well, it must be served at the right temperature, and this has to be strict in order to fully appreciate its freshness and the charm of its bubbles. Its service temperature between 6º and 8ºC. Sparkling wines are very fresh and fruity wines, they are very refreshing.
Moët Ice Impérial is the first and the only champagne specially created to enjoy it with ice. A new experience that combines fun, fresh and free sensations but always faithful to the Moët & Chandon style, which is distinguished by its lively fruit, its seductive palate and its elegant maturity.
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