Sparkling wines are great for celebrating special events. The bubbles make the wine and event a little more glamorous. You can find sparkling wines in just about every price range and flavor. However, it can be a challenge to select the sparkling wine that is right for you. There are so many choices. Do you want a bold sparkling red, a classic white, or a subdued rose? Will you do better with a $10 bottle or a $300 bottle? To find the sparkling wine that’s right for you, you need to understand the difference between champagne and sparkling wine, how bubble size impacts taste, and what the labels mean.
Champagne VS Sparkling Wine
Genuine champagne only comes from the Champagne region of France. It’s comprised of three grapes, including Pinot Meunier, Chardonnay, and Pinot Noir. Its bubbles are created traditionally. The carbonation from the second fermentation gets trapped in the champagne. Lower-priced sparkling wines come from Spain and Italy. They use Spanish grapes, like Parellada, Macabeo, and Xarel.lo. Instead of going through the second fermentation as seen in champagne, they ferment sparkling wine in a large barrel and then bottle it under pressure.
Different Bubble Sizes
Smaller bubbles equal better-quality wine. A high-quality sparkling wine has bubbles that are effervescent. When you drink them, they have a frothy feel in your mouth. If you go to an event and you see that the sparkling wine or champagne you are drinking has large bubbles, it’s of inferior quality.
What You Learn by Looking at Labels
The label on sparkling wine gives you a lot of information about the flavor profile of the wine. It tells you how the wine is going to taste. To prevent sparkling wine from tasting bitter, they add a mixture of wine and sugar. Most labels will tell you how much sugar has been added. If you see Brut, you know that there are fewer than 12 grams of added sugar for each liter. Demi-Sec or Doux is going to be a lot sweeter. Brut Nature has less than three g of sugar. These wines have a more austere flavor.
As you can see, there is more to selecting a good sparkling wine than meets the eye. It’s one thing to research them, and it is another thing to go out and taste them. To get the most out of sparkling wines, learn how to pair them with different foods and identify which wines are best for different locations. Soon, you will be a sparkling wine aficionado.