Imagine sipping on a glass of Champagne, Spumante, Cava or Prosecco … have you ever stopped and wondered how the bubbles got in there? Probably not, I mean who thinks about these things while drinking, but if you have, here is the answer …
The two main methods for making sparkling wine are:
It all starts off with a base-wine and a cocktail called “liqueur de tirage” (sugar & yeasts) that is added to instigate a second fermentation. WHY??? When yeast converts sugar into alcohol, it naturally produces carbon dioxide. If you have this procedure take place in a closed environment that leaves no space for the CO2 to escape … voilà you have your bubbles! They are trapped into the wine until they reach your lips!
In the Classic method, the process takes place in 750 ml bottles. It is a very elaborate procedure that can last anything from 15 months to 10 years. The bottles are gradually turned (remouage) until the dead yeast cells (lees) fall to the neck of the bottle. Then the neck is frozen, the lee is removed, another secret cocktail “Liqueur d’expèdition” is added (depending on the producer) and then they are capped and ready to enjoy.
In the Charmant method, this second fermentation takes place in a large pressurized tank. It is all quicker and faster, we’re talking less than a month.
Different bubbles, different aromas, different texture, different wines hich bubble do you