Somewhere, sometime there is always a National Day or a Remembrance Day to celebrate one thing or another often somewhere nearby!
This coming August 13th is one such day when many of you will be raising and imbibing a glass or two of Prosecco the now famous Italian Sparkling Wine that over the past 15 years or so has taken the wine world by storm.
The vast vineyards of Northern Italy have historically been he home to Prosecco, indeed the town of Pucinium near to Trieste was the original home to this then regional sparkling and still wine. As it became more popular it took on some notoriety as the bouquet and taste of apples were noted as coming from that of Prosecco (the region).
Fast forward to the better quality wines that were being made after the second world war when smart proprietors of this fresh-tasting fizz decided to claim an original style later only to be associated with the Prosecco we know and sip today.
First they had to create the ‘easy-to-say’ name of Prosecco in a more formal capacity using the grape Glera as the sole cultivar in elaborating the wine.
With this now newly formed authority in action and a delimited region with its own appellation or DOC, the modern drink we know as Prosecco was born.
It seems to mater not a jot that little or nothing was ever mentioned about this rather unknown regional grape but plenty was spoken about this ‘new, globetrotting sparkling wine’ and a legend was born.
In recent years the best vineyards have now been selected as superior, one is named Conegliano-Valdobbiadene and duly promoted to the top appellation DOCG. This brings lower yields, hand pruning and picking (it’s certainly hillier!) and more time in the fermentation tanks often retaining a better fruit profile and sometimes with a drier aromatic note.
The vast vineyards of Northern Italy have historically been he home to Prosecco, indeed the town of Pucinium near to Trieste was the original home to this then regional sparkling and still wine.
As with most things Italian the livery of the wines now on the market had become a ‘thing of beauty’ with original labelling to rival many other sparkling wines on the world market, you might now say ‘an icon was born’.
As with many sparkling wines around the world Prosecco is the much-flavoured ingredient to such luminous cocktails and spritzers such as Bellini and Spritz Veneziano or even a Mimosa. I personally like it in a Negroni! Go try! It is also a great accompaniment to a smart Afternoon Tea often served in fine hotels and restaurants to great acclaim and yes National Afternoon Tea Week is soon upon us too with great rejoicing (cake-eating!) expected between August 8-14th.
Prosecco is here to stay, whether solo or as a special ingredient for celebrating that ‘something special’ and we all need that now and again!
Stephen Barrett is a Wine and Food Writer based in Plymouth Stephen welcomes correspondence via his website www.stephenbarrett.com Facebook and LinkedIn as Stephen Barrett, Twitter and Instagram as @bistrowineman