This is “POP or FLOP”, where we taste test sparkling wines so you don’t have to! (Tough job, we know! 😉) This week we’re sippin’ on Santa Margherita’s NV Prosecco Superiore, from the stunning Conegliano-Valdobbiadene Prosecco DOCG of Veneto, Italy. If you had a chance to read our Prosecco 101 post, you might recall that this area is home to the highest quality Prosecco in Italy. All grapes are harvested by hand and crafted into this vivacious and delicious style of wine. So how does Santa Margherita’s Prosecco stack up to the others? And is it a bottle of bubbles you should POP? 💁 Or is it a FLOP? 🙅 Let’s see!
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.
We are lucky to have quite a few Venetian friends here in Toronto. Our conversations usually revolve around how different northern Italy is compared to the south (true), how beautiful the Veneto is (very true) and how great Prosecco (especially Nino Franco’s Prosecco) is – also very true! We visited the Nino Franco winery in Valdobbiadene at the end of August 2016. The late summer sun provided a beautiful, warm back drop for our visit to the scenic winery, which was buzzing with harvest prep.
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?
Picture it: you’re trekking up the gorgeous, steep, hills of Valdobbiadene in the Prosecco region of Italy – sweaty, out of breath and thirsty you see what appears to be a vending machine full of sparkling wine in the distance. 😳 Could it be? Is it a mirage? Nope – its the infamous Prosecco vending machine!
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.