Everybody loves Champagne. It's a treat that is generally poured in small fluted glasses and raised during toasts at special occasions. But what a lot of people don't realize is that they are not drinking Champagne.
Champagne is a sparkling wine that is produced in the relatively small region of Champagne in France. Only those sparkling wines produced in this region are allowed to be labeled as 'Champagne.' And an entry level bottle of Champagne is going to start in the $50 range. So, typically you are toasting with some other sparkling wine.
In the U.S., there are a tremendous number of makers of sparkling wine. Most will produce a wine that can taste very much like the French Champagne. And, you can also find these sparkling wines infused with fruit flavors such as peach and nut flavors such as almond. An entry level bottle of sparking wine in the U.S. can be as little as $5.
In Italy, Prosecco is the their signature sparkling wine. Produced in the Veneto region just north of Venice, this sparkling wine usually produces bigger bubbles. Bottles of Prosecco can be purchased in the $10- $15 range.
The sparkling wine of Spain is Cava that is produced in the Catalonia region of Spain where Barcelona is located. Nice bottles of Cava can be purchased for around $15.
In future postings we'll explore more about these wonderful sparkling wines, the grapes used to produce them, the fermentation processes, the various types of each, and how well they pair with food.
Here's to popping a bottle of sparkling wine! Cheers!