Sunday, January 15, 2017

Wine 101 - Champagne vs Prosecco

If any of you are like me, then you enjoyed a plethora of bubbly wines over the holiday season – especially for New Years. I had some Champagne in the fridge all ready to enjoy for New Years Eve. Then, we went and did our December wine club tasting at Cooper’s Hawk and came home with a bottle of Prosecco. At the time, I didn’t think about it a whole lot. All I knew was that it was wine and they both had BUBBLES. Who doesn’t love bubbles!?

I ended up using the Prosecco that night instead and made this delicious little cocktail. A shot or so of Chambord topped off with the Prosecco and a couple of raspberries to make it look pretty. Also – can we talk about how adorable these glasses are? The drink was so good and the perfect way to celebrate the evening away. Even if it was just me and the hubs.

It wasn’t until a few days ago when I opened the fridge and saw the bottle of Champagne and got me thinking. What the heck is the difference between Champagne and Prosecco? I sure didn’t know so it was time to research! Here's a fun little graphic to break it all down.

The biggest difference between these two bubblies is the region where they are made. Champagne is made in the Champagne region of France which is about 80 miles Northeast of Paris. Prosecco is made in the Veneto region of Italy which is about 15 miles North of Venice. One note – these brands are both VERY attached to their names so if it isn’t produced in one of these two places – IT’S NOT LEGIT. Check your labels folks.

If you start shopping around for Champagne and Prosecco, you’ll see a noticeable difference in the cost. A decent bottle of Champagne will run you about $40 where you can get a Prosecco for around $14. The reason? The method of production. Champagne is produced using a costly method called “The Traditional Method” which involves 2 fermentation periods along with aging before it is sold. The method to produce Prosecco called “The Tank Method” is a bit less expensive. It still goes through 2 fermentations but rather than being aged, it is cooled in an autoclave tank then bottled.

OK – I know that’s a lot of technical info and all you want to know is do they taste different? Champagne and Prosecco while similar, do have different flavor profiles. Champagne tends to have notes of almond, citrus, peach and white cherry and is usually on the dry side. Prosecco has notes of green apple, honeysuckle, pear and cream and tends to be a bit sweeter. You really can’t go wrong because, the good news? They both have bubbles of course! Cheers!

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