A Closer Look at the Spectacular Sparkling Wines of Ontario, Canada!

That’s right! There’s a lot more to Canada than maple syrup, polar bears and a strapping young Prime Minister! The country is home to a broad range of climates and micro-climates, with many viticultural areas on the same ideal grape growing latitudes as much of France. In our last post (A Look at the Sparkling Wines of Canada… Eh!) we took you across the country, from coast-to-coast, and gave you an overview of the amazing cool-climate sparkling wine crafted in the Great White North. Now we’re going to focus in on each of the 3 main viticultural areas in greater detail, starting with our home province: Ontario! (With British Columbia and Nova Scotia to follow in subsequent posts 😉).

The Sparkling Wines of Italy

Like Champagne in France, Italian sparkling wine has become synonymous with Prosecco – but that’s not all that the country has to offer when it comes to bubbly! From the “Metodo Classico” Champagne-like wines of Franciacorta, to the perfect pizza pairing sparkling reds of Lambrusco, to wines cellared in the sea in Ligura (not kidding! 😳), Italy’s sparkling wines are as unique and diverse as the country’s cuisine.

Why Ontario Sparkling Wines are the Best, Eh!

That’s right! There’s more to Canada than maple syrup, polar bears and a hunky Prime Minister! The country is home to a diverse array of climates, with certain areas (like southern Ontario) on the same ideal grape growing latitude as southern France. Fortunately for us Toronto based #SparklingWinos, that means we’re able to produce world class wines in our own backyard!

What do you mean “Champagne” isn’t a type of grape?

That’s right! Despite what some may think, Champagne is not a grape variety! In fact, the world’s most famous sparkling wine is made from a complex blend of various grape varieties, grown in certain vineyards within the Champagne region of northern France. So, which grapes go into Champagne and what are their roles in the blend (or “cuvée”)? Let us take you through in this quick 101, and hopefully the learning cuvée, errrrr curve, won’t be too high!

Cava 101: What is Cava?

Maybe you’re familiar with the term “Cava”, or maybe you’re not. But y’know that iconic black and gold bottle of bubbly that you’ve seen at every New Years Party? Surely you’ve had a glass of it at some point right? Well, that’s Cava. So what is Cava exactly? And what makes it different from Champagne or Prosecco?

Prosecco 101: What is Prosecco?

Whether you enjoy the occasional glass of sparkling wine (or are a self-professed sparkling wino like us) we can pretty much guarantee that you’ve had a glass of Prosecco at some point. Prosecco has become so popular that last year producers even sparked concerns of a global shortage! 😱 So what is Prosecco exactly? What makes it different from Champagne? And why do people love it so much?

Plan a Day in Prosecco

When we began planning our 2016 trip to Venice, Prosecco (Italy’s most popular bubbly) was top of mind for us sparkling winos. We wondered, are there special kinds of Prosecco available in Venice that we can’t get at home? Is it sold by the cask at restaurants overlooking pretty canals? Will a scruffy gondolier let us pop bottles on his gondola in the sunset? Ok, scratch that last thought, however exciting.