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Wine Making Methods

29/08/2013

When it comes to the production of sparkling wines there are 2 different methods that result in 2 very different tastes; the Charmat Method and the Classic (or Traditional) Method. Although there are many variations in specific processes most sparkling wines use one of these methods for secondary fermentation.

Classic Method

This involves a second fermentation taking place in an individual bottle. Champagne has been made in this way for over 300 years and, according to French law, cannot be called Champagne if made any other way. In essence each bottle is an individual fermentation tank and it is quite an extensive process, taking over 3 years to complete. The results of this method are wines that are less fruity than Charmat made wines. The chemical changes that take place in the bottle diminish the fruitiness of the wine and alter the  texture to smooth and creamy as opposed to fresh and vibrant. The bubbles from bottle fermentation can be less persistent and smaller.

Charmat Method

Named after the Frenchman (Eugène Charmat) who advocated and endorsed this method, this is essentially second fermentation in large, closed, stainless steel, pressurized tanks. In comparison to the classic production of wine this process can take a few weeks from start to finish (although it can take up to 6 months for Cuveè and Prestige). The resulting wine is fruity and fresh and is the perfect way to extract the exquisite taste from the Italian grown grapes in Follador Prosecco!