Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Happy Champagne Day!!

If there was EVER a day to drink Champagne (or any sparkling wine), today is the day! 

It is offically National Champagne Day, a day to recognize Dom Perignon and others who contributed to the development and perfection of this awesome libation! 

There are some who say that December 31 ~ New Year's Eve ~ is the official day of recognition for Champagne, but truly it is August 4.

Of course, bubbly can only be called Champagne if it is from the Champagne region in France, otherwise the proper term is 'sparkling wine', 'bubbly', or ~ the other French term for a sparkling wine made from an area outside of the Champagne region is 'cremant'. (Although 'cremant' has three distinctly different definitions, but for today's purposes it will mean "not from Champagne!")

Classic Champagne is made from a blend of three different varietals: Pinot Noir, (yes ~ your white bubbly is made from a red grape!), Pinot Meunier (another red grape pronounced: moo-nyay) and Chardonnay. The wine will be white/golden if no skins are used in the production of the wine. A rose` results when the juice remains in contact with the skins for a prolonged period of time.

In the US ~ particularly California,  most sparkling wine is made using only Pinot Noir and Chardonnay grapes. Champagne undergoes two fermentations, one in the tank/barrel, etc. and the second one takes place in the bottle ~ this is the 'method champenoise' or traditional method.  Sparkling wine can also be made in the Charmat method (in tank for the second fermentation), and then bottled/corked afterward.

For a quick, fun look at the sparkling wine process here is a video from Schramsberg, in California.

Don't forget to celebrate this day with a bottle of Bubbly ~ you'll be glad you did!

Find it~ Buy it~ Try it~ Love it!
Salud! KathyD 

"Come quickly ~ I am tasting the stars!"
Dom Perignon 1693

                         

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