While Prosecco may be Italy’s most well-known sparkling wine, the country is home to an incredible array of bubbly options. In general, there are two main camps: those made in the Charmat method and those made in the traditional method, or Metodo Classico.
Prosecco is the main adopter of the Charmat method, which carries out a secondary fermentation in stainless steel tanks to gain its bubbles. Made from the Glera grape, these wines are typically bright, zesty and fruit-forward pours that often come at a great value. The newly approved Prosecco Rosé offerings gain their cherry-red hue from a small addition of Pinot Nero in the blend.
Metodo Classico wines are made more akin to Champagne in method, meaning the secondary fermentation to yield carbonation occurs inside each individual bottle. This hands-on approach typically translates to more premium pricing. Within this camp, there are a number of sparkling options that span a range of grape varieties.
Chardonnay and Pinot Nero are the dynamic duo found in Northern Italy’s Alta Langa, Franciacorta and Trentodoc sparkling wines. The native grape Durella is the base for the elegant sparkling wines of Lessini Durello in Veneto, while rare versions of sparkling Aglianico can be found in Campania. Not to be forgotten, the joyous ruby-red and rosé sparkling wines made from the Lambrusco family of grapes offer immense drinkability. This category spans both camps, with options made in the Charmat and metodo classcio styles.
Explore the diversity of Italian sparkling wine with these 12 bottles.