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Sparkling Wine & Champagne

Learn about sparkling wine & Champagne — the range of styles, how it’s made and more ...

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What are the different types of sparkling wine and Champagne?

Beloved for its lively bubbles, sparkling wine is the ultimate beverage for any festivity, whether it's a major celebration or a mere merrymaking of nothing much! Sparkling wine is made throughout the winemaking world, but only can be called “Champagne” if it comes from the Champagne region of France and is made using what is referred to as the "traditional method." Other regions have their own specialties—Crémant in other parts of France, Cava in Spain and Prosecco in Italy, to name a few. New World regions like California, Australia and New Zealand enjoy the freedom to make many styles of sparkling wine, with production methods and traditions defined locally. In a dry style, Champagne and sparkling wine goes with just about any type of food. Sweet styles are not uncommon and among both dry and sweet, you'll find white, rosé—or even red!—examples.

How is sparkling wine and Champagne made?

Champagne, Crémant, Cava and many other sparkling wines of the world are made using the traditional method, in which the second fermentation (the one that makes the bubbles) takes place inside the bottle. With this method, spent yeast cells remain in contact with the wine during bottle aging, giving it a creamy mouthful, toasted bread or brioche qualities and in many cases, the capacity to age. For Prosecco, the carbonation process usually occurs in a stainless steel tank (before bottling) to preserve the fresh fruity and floral aromas imminent in this style.

What gives sparkling wine and Champagne its bubbles?

The bubbles in sparkling wine are formed when the base wine undergoes a secondary fermentation, which traps carbon dioxide inside the bottle or fermentation vessel.

How do you serve sparkling wine and Champagne?

Ideally for storing sparkling wine and Champagne in any long-term sense, they should be at cellar temperature, about 55F. For serving, cool sparkling wine and Champagne down to about 40F to 50F. (Most refrigerators are colder than this.) As for drinking it, the best glasses have a stem and flute or tulip shape to allow the bead (bubbles) to show.

How long does sparkling wine and Champagne last?

Most sparkling wines like Prosecco, Cava or others around the “$20 and under” price point are intended for early consumption. Sparkling wines made using the traditional method with extended cellar time before release can typically improve with age. If you are unsure, definitely consult a wine professional for guidance.

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  • Iron Horse Wedding Cuvee 2016  Front Label
    Iron Horse Wedding Cuvee 2016
    Vintage Sparkling Wine from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
    • WS93
    3.6 16 Ratings
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  • Maximin Grunhauser Mosel Riesling Brut Sekt 2016  Front Label
    Maximin Grunhauser Mosel Riesling Brut Sekt 2016
    Vintage Sparkling Wine from Mosel, Germany
      4.4 5 Ratings
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    • Argyle Brut 2016  Front Label
      Argyle Brut 2016
      Vintage Sparkling Wine from Willamette Valley, Oregon
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      • Schug Rouge de Noirs Brut 2016  Front Label
        Schug Rouge de Noirs Brut 2016
        Vintage Sparkling Wine from Carneros, California
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        • Vins el Cep Gelida Brut Gran Reserva 2016  Front Label
          Vins el Cep Gelida Brut Gran Reserva 2016
          Vintage Sparkling Wine from Cava, Spain
          • WW91
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        • Vins el Cep Gelida Brut Reserva Pinot Noir Rose 2016  Front Label
          Vins el Cep Gelida Brut Reserva Pinot Noir Rose 2016
          Rosé Sparkling Wine from Cava, Spain
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          • Gramona La Cuvee 2016  Front Label
            Gramona La Cuvee 2016
            Vintage Sparkling Wine from Penedes, Spain
              4.4 10 Ratings
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            • Iron Horse Classic Vintage Brut 2016  Front Label
              Iron Horse Classic Vintage Brut 2016
              Vintage Sparkling Wine from Green Valley, Russian River, Sonoma County, California
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              • Argyle Brut Rose 2016  Front Label
                Argyle Brut Rose 2016
                Rosé Sparkling Wine from Willamette Valley, Oregon
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                • Nino Franco Faive Rose Brut 2016 Front Label
                  Nino Franco Faive Rose Brut 2016
                  Rosé Sparkling Wine from Veneto, Italy
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                  • Enrico Serafino Alta Langa Metodo Classico Oudeis Brut 2016  Front Label
                    Enrico Serafino Alta Langa Metodo Classico Oudeis Brut 2016
                    Vintage Sparkling Wine from Piedmont, Italy
                    • RP92
                    • WE92
                    • TP90
                    3.4 5 Ratings
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                  *New customers only. One-time use per customer. Order must be placed by 7/31/2021. The $20 discount is given for a single order with a minimum of $100 excluding shipping and tax. Items with pricing ending in .97 are excluded and will not count toward the minimum required. Discount does not apply to corporate orders, gift certificates, StewardShip membership fees, select Champagne brands, Riedel glassware, fine and rare wine, 187ML splits, Picked by Wine.com subscriptions, and all bottles 3.0 liters or larger. No other promotion codes, coupon codes or corporate discounts may be applied to order. Offer valid subject to state law limitations.

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