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Published on November 30th, 2015 | by Jemima

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A look at Champagne and Sparkling Wines

As the colder weather closes in and the festive season lurks around the corner, a spike in the consumption of sparkling wines and champagnes is too on the horizon.images

With that said, research from Majestic shows that sparkling wines such as Prosecco are no longer just a festive treat. In fact, sales of Prosecco were up by 39 per cent from April-September 2013, a trend that certainly hasn’t slowed down. Research is also showing that sparkling wines with low price points are not only commonly overtaking champagne in terms of volume of sales, but are also being served as a casual drink at get-togethers rather than being saved for a special occasion. So what exactly is the difference between a sparkling wine and champagne, and just why is it proving to be so popular?

Champagne vs sparkling wine

The general rule of thumb is that all champagne is sparkling wine, but not all sparkling wine is champagne.

Champagne hails from the Champagne region in France, and only wines manufactured here can be called such. The name has been legally protected by EU law, and only wines made in this region according to the rules outlined by the Comité Interprofessionnel du vin de Champagne (CIVC) are entitled to use it. Still, that hasn’t stopped other countries from developing their own sparkling wine or rose to enter the market.

Types of sparkling wine

Italy, Germany, the United States, Canada, Australia, South Africa and just about any other country in the world known for wine production has an answer to champagne. There are various different types of sparkling wine that prove a more cost-efficient alternative to champagne, whilst not compromising on taste:

Cava – Cava is a sparkling Spanish wine, hailing from the Catalonia region. Dating back to the 1850s, Cava has been modelled closely on Champagne, made using a similar method of production.

Prosecco – mySupermarket reports that sales of Prosecco in the UK have doubled from 2013-2014, overtaking sales of Champagne for the first time in history. Made in Italy, Prosecco is normally dry with an alcohol volume of around 11-12%.

Sparkling Rose – Made using a combination of red and white grapes, sparkling rose is a popular alternative to dryer whites. This pink sparkling wine is a popular gift, and can be paired with savoury canapés as well as fruit-based desserts and nibbles.

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