Champagne is the most famous sparkling wine. Namely this drink first loudly declared the world that sparkling wines are noteworthy. However, in addition to champagne, there are many other types of sparkling wines with its own characteristics. And some of them are quite popular, especially Italian Prosecco and Spanish Cava.
Prosecco is a popular Italian sparkling wine produced mainly in the Veneto region using the so-called “Charmat method”. The main difference between this method and champagne method lies in the fact that the secondary fermentation for Prosecco takes place not in wine bottles, while in special cisterns. Initially in Treviso, they produced only dry wines from Prosecco grapes. Prosecco is too simple grape variety to use the classic champagne method, that’s why all producers of Prosecco use Charmat method. Using this technology, they get fresh and energetic sparkling wine. The only drawback is that it should be consumed at once. The alcohol content of Prosecco varies between 11 – 12%. At home, this wine is considered suitable for any occasion: it is used as an aperitif in combination with a variety of dishes, alone and in cocktails. Prosecco is light and fresh with a rich aroma of fresh white fruit and an intense flavor. Prosecco is nearly always dry (“secco” in Italian means “dry”). This sparkling wine has an excellent reputation. As well as Cava, it is often used as an inexpensive alternative to champagne.
Cava is a Spanish “challenge” to French champagne – a very good analogue of champagne. 95% of the total volume of this wine is produced in Catalonia. The word “Cava” is translated from Catalan as “cave” – that is a stone cellar where the wine is aged. Cava can be produced only in a limited area in Spain (159 municipalities in 10 provinces) and only from certain grape varieties (five white and four red ones). This sparkling wine is produced using traditional champagne technology. Although methods of production of Cava and champagne are similar, they tend to be completely different in grape varieties. In most Cava mixes dominates Macabeo neutral local grape variety. The most exquisite ingredient in Cava sparkling wine is considered Parellada. It gives special freshness and apple aroma. Recently, Cava is often mixed with such famous grape varieties like Chardonnay or Pinot Noir. Traditional Cava has a drier and citrus flavor than Prosecco or champagne.
This is a collaborative post, image credit: George Hodan