The wonderful Prosecco story continues to grow as sales are well on the up, with the UK the largest export market and yet, how much do we know about Prosecco?
So The Wine Tipster has a few pointers for marking your card when it comes to the Prosecco story:
- Prosecco DOC (Registered Designation of Origin) can only be produced in Italy and specifically the North East covering two regions Veneto and Friuli Venezia Giulia and nine provinces, Treviso, Venezia, Padova, Vicenza, Belluno, Pordenone, Udine, Gorizia and Trieste.
- This is a beautiful area to visit and the wonderful city of Treviso is a great base for visiting Prosecco producers as well as taking a trip to Venice.
- Around three quarters of Prosecco DOC production is spumante (sparkling), with the rest almost all frizzante (semi-sparkling).
- Brut is the driest style, followed by Extra Dry and then Dry, with Brut and Extra Dry making up around 90% of Prosecco produced.
- The key grape variety for Prosecco is Glera, which must make up a minimum of 85% of the blend, with other selected local and international varieties like Chardonnay that can be used. Although in reality most Prosecco is 100% Glera.
- As a serving suggestion try Prosecco with a wonderful cheese from the north of Italy called Grana Padano. Look out for Grana Padano aged over 16 months and their Riserva over 20 months, which are both delicious. These are available in your local supermarket or deli.
Here are a few declared runners for the Festive period selected by The Wine Tipster.
Prosecco DOC Brut Dalla Balla, Antonio Facchin, www.hampers.co.uk
Antonio Facchin produce a very stylish Brut Prosecco which is part of a special Tasting Case of Prosecco (ref. 605C) £97.00 on the Hampers.co.ukwebsite https://www.hampers.co.uk/tasting-case-of-prosecco.html
You can also purchase from their Vintners Selection website www.vintners.co.uk
There are some good pairing suggestions for Prosecco and sounds like a great way to spend Christmas!
A beautifully packaged Brut Prosecco, which is a class act on taste too. Ca’ Di’ Rajo has lovely balance and elegance, with notes of grapefruit and green apples. A classy performer.
Prosecco Biancavigna DOC Brut, £15.00, Armit Wines, www.armitwines.co.uk
Biancavigna make beautifully elegant styles of Prosecco and they are most definitely a Group One runner. Their Brut is soft, floral, creamy, very stylish and delicious. Make sure you have a bottle nice and chilled.
Prosecco DOC IL Fresco Brut, Villa Sandi,£11.50, bellavitashop.co.uk North South Wines, Dolcevita Wines, Annessa Import, House of Townend, The Wine Importers for Scotland.
Villa Sandi is a beautiful estate in Conegliano Valdobbiadene in Veneto and is a fabulous producer to visit. They have rightfully a reputation for producing wines of lovely freshness, elegance and finesse. Delicious with salmon.
Paladin Prosecco DOC Extra Dry Millesimato, £97.14 for six bottles, Wimbledon Wine Cellar, www.wimbledonwinecellar.com
The charming Paladin family make a superb range of Proseccos and their soft extra dry style has attractive floral and green apple notes, with a delicate finish. Wimbledon Wine Cellar also have the Paladin Prosecco Frizzante Tappo Spago at £15,00. Well worth a try.
Prosecco Speciale DOC Extra Dry £9.00, Spar
This recently launched premium Prosecco is a real crowd pleaser and a must for the festive period.
Packed with loads of fresh, citrus fruit flavours this extra dry is why Prosecco is so popular.
Books for Christmas
Here are a couple of good reads for the Festive period.
For those of planning your trip to Venice then The Wine Tipster can highly recommend this excellent guide; Venice an entire world by Mario Anton Orefice published by Marcianum Press at £9.35 http://www.marcianumpress.it/en/profilo/autore/mario-anton-orefice
Corkscrew by Peter Stafford-Bow, published by I_AM Self Publishing, 2016,£9.99 from all good bookshops.
Settle down, grab a glass of Prosecco and have a good laugh at an improbable tale of a professional wine buyer. Mark my words, you will enjoy!