Prosecco is a sparkling wine from Italy made by the charmat or tank method. (This is where the second fermentation takes in a tank rather than a bottle like Champagne.)
Prosecco is made in the northeast party of Italy, specifically in the Veneto and Friuli Venezia Giulia regions. (originating in the Valdobbiadene region where wine has been produced since the Roman times) The climate is mild to cool continental climate with hot summers and mild winters and the soil is dominated by gravel. The best vineyard sites are on south facing slopes.
Italian law requires Prosecco to have a minimum of 85% Glera or Prosecco grapes. Some examples are made from 100% Glera grapes and others have other grapes blending in them such as Pinot Blanc, Chardonnay, and Pinot Grigio.
Prosecco DOC: The most common style of Prosecco that can be made from nine provinces.
Prosecco DOCGs: These wines are made from smaller more specific regions and vineyards that require stricter regulations and are in theory a higher quality level. DOCGs consist of Prosecco Conegliano Valdobiaddene Superiore, Colli Asolani, Prosecco Conegliano Valdobiaddene Rive, and Valdobbiadene Superiore di Cartizze. These will be indicated on the label.
Styles, Flavors, and Structure:
Majority of Proseccos are produced in a dry brut style, but there are several examples of different styles. The dominant flavors are green apple, melon, pear, honeysuckle, and cream. It usually tastes a little sweeter than what it really is due to the fruitiness. A classic example’s structure is light bodied, medium plus acidity, medium alcohol, and medium plus fruit.
Brut: 0-12g/L residual sugar
Extra Dry: 12-17g/L residual sugar
Dry: 17-32g/L residual sugar
Prosecco pairs with a wide range of foods. It is generally considered a palate cleanser that can be served before dinner as an aperitif, but also works well with main entrées. Spicy foods are a great pairing due to the bubbles and fruity characteristics. In addition to food pairings Prosecco is an ideal wine for cocktails!
How to Serve:
Should be served around 45 degrees Fahrenheit in a flute like glass.