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Solletico Prosecco 2011
One of the world’s most popular and playful sparkling wines, Prosecco is a specialty of northeastern Italy, spanning nine provinces of the Veneto and Fruili-Venezia Giulia regions. A higher-quality version that must meet more stringent production requirements is known as Prosecco Superiore and must come from the more rugged terrain between the towns of Valdobiaddene and Conegliano. Prosecco can be produced as a still wine, a semi-sparkling wine (“frizzante”), or a fully sparkling wine (“spumante”)—the latter being the most common. While it is typically produced in a “brut” (dry) style, its fresh and fruity character makes it seem a bit sweeter than it actually is. “Extra brut” styles, incorporating higher levels of residual sugar, are quite popular, however.
Made from the Glera grape, which was formerly and confusingly called Prosecco, these wines are notable for pleasant flavors of peach, pear, melon, green apple, and honeysuckle. Lower pressure during the carbonation process (also called the tank method) means that the bubbles are lighter and frothier than in Champagne or other traditional method sparkling wine, and less persistent. Prosecco is also a great choice to blend with orange juice for mimosas for a classic brunch beverage.
Representing the topmost expression of a Champagne house, a vintage Champagne is one made from the produce of a single, superior harvest year. Vintage Champagnes account for a mere 5% of total Champagne production and are produced about three times in a decade. Champagne is typically made as a blend of multiple years in order to preserve the house style; these will have non-vintage, or simply, NV on the label. The term, "vintage," as it applies to all wine, simply means a single harvest year.