Sparkling Techniques

There is nothing as refreshing and enjoyable as a chilled bottle of mousseux (foamy), or fine bubbly. No longer are sparkling wines simply uncorked to celebrate a new year or a kid’s college graduation. Consumers are finally discovering this exquisite style of wine with global consumption that is now growing at twice the rate of still wine. That in itself, for a sparkling wine lover, is cause to celebrate. The stigma of sparkling wine consumption into the 21st century can be attributed to three key factors. 1. Champagne had by far the biggest mind share of consumers having created a strong brand and image — it was the Ferrari of sparkling wines. But the high cost of production from manual labor to long cellaring and extensive blending translated into high prices. Consumers could not justify such a grandiose expense for anything but a once- or twice-a-year special occasion or celebration. 2. The alternatives were cheap sparkling wines that had nothing in common with champagne but bubbles. Most were tart and harsh, and so they were often blended with sweet fruit