Today, October 16, is International Champagne Day. International Champagne Day falls on the third Friday in October. There are many different varieties of sparkling wine and what is the difference between prosecco, champagne and cava? We explain!
Champagne, it’s not just any sparkling wine, it’s the world’s most famous. The drink is unique in the fact that it is only sparkling wine from the Champagne districts in northern France that can be called just champagne.
The drink has a special mineral character that has to do with the unique soil with its high content of chalk. The acidity of the wine is high and the drink itself is very healthy thanks to the cool climate that makes the grapes barely have time to ripen. Otherwise, the wine brings out flavors in a combination of citrus fruits such as lemon and grapefruit. Champagne is also characterized by its small but many bubbles and, unlike the other sparkling wines, is considered much fuller. The most common grape varieties used in the production of the drink are a quartet consisting of two blue pinot meunier, a pinot noir and a green chardonnay. As half of the grapes are blue, extra care is taken during the production so that the blue skins on the grapes are not crushed so that they will color the must blue and the grapes are therefore pressed by hand. In terms of storage, the champagne can withstand several years of rest and it is also common with so-called vintage champagne. Vintage champagne is the name given to the wines that were produced during the years when the harvest was of extra high quality, which is then produced as vintage champagne. They are further stored for storage for at least three years with yeast precipitation and stored again for storage.
Cava is not only the world’s most exported sparkling wine but also Spain’s equivalent of champagne. Every year, about 244 million bottles are produced and only 157 of these bottles leave the country.
Why Cava is very reminiscent of champagne is because a man named Josep Raventós Fatjó traveled to champagne at the end of the 19th century to study the already existing bubble production that was there. He brought with him knowledge of how to make the sparkling drink and not long after became the first in Spain to produce Cava and then in larger quantities. At first he called the sparkling drink champaña because it was so reminiscent of the drink he studied in France. The name on the equivalent Spanish drink lasted until the 1970s when the EU banned the name champaña when the original protection came into force and the drink was renamed cava. There are no special requirements for cavan to be manufactured in a special place in order to qualify as cava. Despite this, 90% of Cava’s production is still produced in regions such as Catalonia and the Penedés district. Rioja, Navarra and Zaragoza are three more districts where cava is produced. Cavan is made from both domestic and international grapes. Initially, the drink was made only on Spanish grape varieties such as Macaboe, Xarel-lo, Pardella, Garnacha tinta and Monastrell. In today’s Spain, the production is not as strict regarding the grape variety, but also uses grape varieties such as Chardonnay and Pinot noir. Cavan has an equivalent to the vintage champagne. Gran Reserva on the label means that the drink has been stored for at least 2-3 years. Otherwise, the wine should be stored for 9 months where it is fermented twice and then once in a bottle before it is ready to drink.
A third Mediterranean country whose sparkling drink is very popular is found in the boot-like country, Italy and the drink prosecco.
Prosecco is originally made from the green grape that was previously named prosecco. In order not to confuse the grape with the popular drink and also to protect the name from being used by other players around the world, they chose to change the name of the grape itself from prosecco to glaze. The number of bubbles in the must can vary depending on whether it is frizzante or spumante. If the word frizzante is added to the label, it means that the bubbles are more in a pearly style, while if it says spumante, the bubbles are more like how they appear in a cava or champagne. In addition, the drink is divided into three different styles depending on the sugar content. Dry, extra dry or brut. Dry is the most common, with a fruity taste reminiscent of pears, tutti frutti and with hints of almonds as clear aromas. In addition, this variant has the sweetest of these three and has a sugar content from 17 to 32 grams / liter. Extra dry is the most traditional of these three styles that have a sugar content of 12-17 grams / liter. The most unusual and least sweet is brute, which is always dry and has a sugar content that varies from 0-12 grams / liter.
Hope you have gained some new knowledge about the differences and similarities of the sparkling drinks. The hottest day of the year is definitely worth celebrating, we think at Krogarna.se.