Banfi Rosa Regale Brachetto (375ML half-bottle) 2016
Perfect for any occasion. A unique and festive sparkling wine, seductive aperitif, and elegant dessert wine. Pairs well with seafood, cheeses, spicy fare and chocolate. Serve chilled.
Castello Banfi is a family-owned vineyard estate and winery located in the Brunello region of Tuscany. This award-winning estate was founded on the philosophy of blending tradition with innovation, and is recognized as a pioneer in elevating the standards of Italian winemaking. Dedication to excellence has won the approval of aficionados the world over. Capturing honor after prestigious honor, Castello Banfi is a constellation of single vineyards encompassing over three dozen varying subsoils. The estate is renowned for its clonal research that allows noble grape varieties to thrive in their optimal terroir, creating not only a consistently outstanding Brunello, but the ultimate expression of Montalcino Super Tuscans.
Set upon a backdrop of the visually stunning Alps, the enchanting and rolling hills of Piedmont are the source of some of the country’s longest-lived and most sought-after wines. Vineyards cover a great majority of the land area—especially in Barolo—with the most prized sites at the top hilltops or on south-facing slopes where sunlight exposure is maximized. Piedmont has a continental climate with hot, humid summers leading to cold winters and precipitation year-round. The reliable autumnal fog provides a cooling effect, especially beneficial for Nebbiolo, Piedmont’s most prestigious variety.
In fact, Nebbiolo is named exactly for the arrival of this pre-harvest fog (called “nebbia” in Italian), which prolongs cluster hang time and allows full phenolic balance and ripeness. Harvest of Nebbiolo is last among Piedmont's varieties, occurring sometime in October. This grape is responsible for the exalted wines of Barbaresco and Barolo, known for their ageability, firm tannins and hallmark aromas of tar and roses. Nebbiolo wines, despite their pale hue, pack a pleasing punch of flavor and structure; the best examples can require about a decade’s wait before they become approachable. Barbaresco tends to be more elegant in style while Barolo is more powerful. Across the Tanaro River, the Roero region, and farther north, the regions of Gattinara and Ghemme, also produce excellent quality Nebbiolo.
Easy-going Barbera is the most planted grape in Piedmont, beloved for its trademark high acidity, low tannin and juicy red fruit. Dolcetto, Piedmont’s other important red grape, is usually ready within a couple of years of release.
White wines, while less ubiquitous here, should not be missed. Key varieties include Arneis, Cortese, Timorasso, Erbaluce and the sweet, charming Muscat, responsible for the brilliantly recognizable, Moscato d'Asti.
What are the different types of red sparkling wine?
Red sparkling wine comes from a handful of wine regions across the globe, but Italy produces the most types compared to other countries. While the sweet style of Lambrusco is best known globally, Lambrusco actually comes in many styles. From dry to not-so-dry, Lambrusco can be incredibly aromatic, concentrated, full of flavor and appear in a range of colors from deep purple to bright pink (to gold). Travelling slightly north from Lambrusco’s homeland of Emilia Romagna, the Piedmont region of Italy wins many hearts over with its slightly sweet, rose scented Brachetto d’Acqui from Asti. Piedmont and northern Italy are home to a plethora of rare and unique red sparkling wines, often made from the Barbera and Freisa grapes. West of here, on the Alpine border of France and Switzerland, the region of Savoie boasts its own version. This cheerful and charming red sparkling wine, often from the cru of Cerdon is, by law, composed of 100% Gamay or Gamay blended with a small amount of Poulsard. Portugal makes its own version from the Baga grape. Last but certainly not least, going half-way around the globe, brings us to Australia where sparkling Shiraz is a frequently consumed beverage, especially at brunch, barbecues and Christmastime.
How is red sparkling wine made?
Red sparkling wine is made using the same methods used to make clear and rosé sparkling wines, however in contrast with these regions, which often have to adhere to methods prescribed by law, red sparkling wine methods are often the decision of the winemaker. Lambrusco can be made using the Martinotti or Charmat method (the carbonation process usually occurs in a stainless steel tank), the traditional method (like that used for Champagne) or even the methode ancestrale (a method that uses residual grape sugar for the second fermentation). Brachetto d’Acqui is typically made using the Charmat method while in Savoie the methode ancestrale is popular. Sparkling Shiraz is produced in any of the above ways.
What gives red sparkling wine its color and bubbles?
The color in red sparkling wine comes from the red pigments in the grape skins during the initial fermentation and maceration process. 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 red sparkling wine?
For serving, cool red sparkling wine down to about 40F to 50F. (Most refrigerators are colder than this.) As for drinking red sparkling wine, the best glasses have a stem and flute or tulip shape to allow the bead (bubbles) to show.
How long does red sparkling wine last?
Most red sparkling wines are intended for early consumption. Once opened and stoppered with a Champagne stopper, the effervescence will usually last for a few days. If you are unsure, consult a wine professional for guidance.