Is Prosecco Champagne? Here’s How to Tell These Bubbly Beverages Apart

Another choice is Prosecco, which, like Champagne, is a sparkling white wine. Is Prosecco Champagne?

While Prosecco and Champagne are comparable and are typically used interchangeably, they are not the same. In fact, the 2 alcohols have more distinctions than similarities, including where they are produced, the grapes utilized to make each one, and how they both taste. To help you select in between when to purchase Prosecco and when to stock up on Champagne, we’ve delved into what each one is, the specific ways in which they vary, and how to select a bottle of Prosecco that won’t disappoint.
What Is Prosecco?
Simply put, Prosecco is a champagne produced in a very specific region of Italy. There are rules (detailed by a consortium) that dictate what grape ranges can be used, each action of the production process, and more. “Prosecco is a shimmering white wine made in the DOC [designation of controlled origin] and DOCG [designation of regulated origin and guaranteed] areas of Veneto and Fruili-Venezia-Giulia,” states Lindsay Gabbard, sommelier, partner of Rimessa Roscioli, and co-founder of Roscioli Wine Club. “A common mistaken belief is that Prosecco simply implies a champagne from Italy, but it can only be given the name Prosecco if it comes from the designated locations of Veneto and Friuli Venezia Giulia, declared by the consortium.”

The grapes that are utilized to make the sparkling wine are likewise really crucial, and help set Prosecco apart from Champagne. “Prosecco is crafted primarily (85 percent, at a minimum) from the Glera grape range,” explains Katy Long, Director of International Sales for Vintage Wine Estates.
Originally the grape was referred to as Prosecco, however it was renamed to prevent any consumer confusion. “The remaining maximum 15 percent of the blend can make up regional complimentary varieties, such as select grapes from the Pinot household, and Chardonnay,” Long includes. “If a Prosecco is crafted in the rosé design, only Glera and Pinot Noir grapes are allowed.”
What Is Champagne?
Like Prosecco, Champagne is a sparkling red wine. Champagne comes from the Champagne region of France, and need to be produced according to its own extremely particular set of regulations.

What’s the Difference Between Prosecco and Champagne?
Prosecco and Champagne differ in a number of considerable methods, but the three primary differences relate to the grapes utilized, the way each drink is created, and the taste, which, as you will discover, is greatly affected by the very first 2 significant distinctions.

Prosecco is made up of at least 85 percent Glera grapes, however as Mollie Battenhouse MW, National Director of Wine Education for Jackson Family Wines, points out, Champagne is made with entirely different grapes. More specifically, Champagne includes a mix of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Pinot Meunier grapes. There are a handful of other grape varieties that are permitted to be mixed into a Champagne, but they’re seldom ever utilized.

Champagne is then produced utilizing the méthode champenoise, or “conventional approach.” This indicates that once the grapes are pushed and fermented to develop the last blend, each bottle is filled with that still (not yet shimmering) liquid. Then, yeast and sugar are added to each bottle, which starts a secondary fermentation, and the bottles are sealed. The secondary fermentation produces alcohol and carbon dioxide, and considering that the bottles are sealed, the carbon dioxide has no other way to leave and rather liquifies into the red wine, offering it bubbles. This is why Champagne boasts smaller sized bubbles than those you discover in Prosecco. As Battenhouse puts it: “The shimmer is produced in the same bottle you wind up purchasing and drinking from.”
With Prosecco, nevertheless, the production procedure is visibly various. “Prosecco is crafted in the Charmat, or tank method, where the secondary fermentation (which develops the bubbles) happens in stainless steel tanks or vats, as opposed to Champagne where it occurs in the bottle,” describes Long. “This method assists to retain the white wine’s fresh and fruity characteristics, and suggests that Prosecco’s dazzling shimmer can be accomplished in a more effective (scalable) method, which accounts for a few of the expense difference in between the two.”

Another aspect that impacts expense? Time. While the Charmat method means Prosecco will become bubbly (and thus offered for purchase) over the course of a couple of months, Champagne needs considerably more time. Due to the method it is produced, Champagne has a minimum maturation period of 15 months before it can be sold.

Given that Prosecco and Champagne are made with various grapes and are likewise produced differently, it’s not a surprise that they do not have the same taste. Long describes Champagne as a “complex, age-worthy, structured white wine which benefits from (if not requires) the longer aging time on lees to develop the characteristic Brioche, toast, and nutty character that supports its iconic high acid and tiny bubbles.”

On the other hand, Long discusses: “Prosecco, by contrast, is renowned for its lovely, fresh, light, and fruity character. According to Gabbard, this indicates that Prosecco is typically “light, fruity, and somewhat flower, with medium to high level of acidity” and a somewhat sweet taste on account of the sugar present.

How to Choose a Good Bottle of Prosecco
When it pertains to purchasing a bottle of Prosecco, there are a couple of elements to consider, which you can keep an eye out for by looking at the bottle. “As a wine professional, I tend to pick bottles of any red wine from an importer whose red wines I tend to like, so I ‘d begin there. If you don’t have that details, then I ‘d make certain to choose a bottle from Prosecco DOC or Prosecco Conegliano-Valdobbiadene DOCG to ensure you’re getting a great product,” shares Battenhouse. “Another important quality difference originates from the region Prosecco originates from (which can be from Veneto and parts of Friuli). Friulian white wines are normally of extremely high quality and the wines are a touch richer and creamier in texture; an excellent example is Benvolio Prosecco DOC.

For Long, it’s essential to think about how you plan to consume the Prosecco before purchasing it. “When selecting a bottle of Prosecco, think of the celebration in which you intend on drinking it,” she describes. “If you’re adding a splash of white peach puree (classic for a Bellini), or orange juice (mimosa), or cassis liqueur (Kir royale), it’s fine to be a little less concerned about going with the most pricey or prominent bottle you can discover given that a few of the wine’s character will be co decided by the juice or liqueur you’re including.”

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