The GOODS from Prosecco Superiore
The holiday season is upon us, which means gift-giving, gatherings and celebrations with friends, family and colleagues. Whether it’s to kick off Christmas dinner, toasting co-workers in a restaurant, or at a party counting down the minutes until the stroke of midnight, show good taste and refinement by choosing the wines of Prosecco Superiore , a small but very special denomination 50km north of Venice called Conegliano Valdobbiadene Prosecco.
The region, or D.O.C.G. (Denominazione di Origine Controllata e Garantita), is made up of a collection of steep hillsides between the Dolomites and the Adriatic Sea — terroir that produces sought after wines of the highest quality.
In Canada – where sparkling wine is most associated with special occasions – a bottle of Prosecco Superiore is often recommended as a less expensive but equally sophisticated alternative to a bottle of Champagne. To Italians, despite the D.O.C.G. designation denoting excellence, the wine is as much about fun as it is refinement; a facet of every day enjoyment.
Conegliano Valdobbiadene is the birthplace of Prosecco, where it found its best and most emblematic expression and where its global success begun. This is the reason why the Prosecco here is considered “Superiore”. The Conegliano Valdobbiadene area was officially recognised as a protected region in the sixties, but since 2009, Prosecco can only be produced in the north eastern part of Italy, in three specific appellations that represent two different quality levels: the DOC Prosecco and the two D.O.C.G., Conegliano Valdobbiadene and Asolo.
Some are still (“tranquillo) or semi-sparkling (“frizzante”), but in Canada we are most familiar with the sparkling (“spumante”) iteration, as its persistent bubbles lend it – as mentioned – common comparison with Champagne. Conegliano Valdobbiadene Prosecco Superiore D.O.C.G. is mainly produced as sparkling wine (96%).
Champagne – a blend of Chardonnay, Pinot Meunier and Pinot Noir – follows the French “méthode traditionnelle”, wherein second alcoholic fermentation occurs in the bottle, while Prosecco Superiore – made with at least 85% Glera – follows the “Carmat-Martinotti” method, meaning its secondary fermentation occurs in stainless steel tanks. It is this production method that retains the distinctive fresh and fruity aromas.
Few wines make a more indelible first impression than those of Conegliano Valdobbiadene Prosecco. Fruity and floral, they are a distinct pleasure to be enjoyed chilled, especially with the people closest to you over the festive season.