7 things you didn’t know about sparkling wine

The world of fizz is in a very good place, especially when you consider we’re quaffing bubbles in the billions.

Sparkle has soared in popularity with more than 2.3 billion bottles produced every year – and while sparkling wine can be produced anywhere in the world, champagne can only come from France’s Champagne region.

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They can be very dry and very sweet. They can be translucent, straw yellow, copper pink and ravishing red. They can be made in the traditional champagne method, when the wines have undergone a second fermentation in the bottle; or the tank method (used for prosecco) which takes place in a closed stainless steel tank.

What we know for certain is the sound of corks popping calls for a celebration, so how about these fun fizzy facts…

1. The tyre pressure of a double decker bus is the equivalent to a bottle of sparkling wine

It may sound like a busman’s holiday but we’ve done the maths:  On average, there are 250 million bubbles in a bottle of sparkling wine and the pressure’s the same as a double decker bus tyre.

2. There are seven styles of fizz, and it’s all down to the sweetness

Whether it’s champagne, cava, crémant, prosecco or English sparkling wine, there are seven levels of sweetness when it comes to fizz.

Brut Nature/Zero (or the skinny in fashionable circles) equates to less than 3g of sugar. Extra Brut is very dry with zero to 6g.

Brut, the classic (more than 90% of all champagnes are made as Brut), up to 12g. Extra Dry/Sec (12-17g) is the one that fools us into thinking it’s dryer, but in fact sweeter.

Sec (17-32g) tastes rounded and rich and pairs well with gourmet dishes, while Demi-Sec (32-50g) is sweet. Doux (more than 50g), very sweet.

3. You can get vegan varieties of fizz

There are vegan friendly fizzes out there, it’s just a case of sniffing them out. Top drops include Moet & Chandon and Piper Heidsieck, but if you’re after a more affordable option, Mionetto prosecco is vegan friendly.

4. The largest champagne bottle in the world is named after a biblical king

We love our mini moments, especially 20cl gift sets with bows and straws. But how about when you trade up from a magnum (150cl) to a Midas?

The equivalent to 40 standard 75cl bottles of champagne, according to Greek mythology everything King Midas touched turned to gold – and who better to create this unique format than Champagne Armand de Brignac with their gold lacquered Ace of Spades.

5. Franciacorta is Italy’s answer to champagne

Our love of prosecco from the Veneto region is well storied but did you know that Franciacorta from Lombardy is the country’s top drop… and Ca’ del Bosco make some of the best.

6. Quavers or champers? 

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The average 125ml glass of sparkle contains 89 calories – the equivalent to a multi-pack bag of quavers.

7. Flutes are so passé

While we love the look of a tall, elegant flute, a tulip shaped wine glass is the best shape to bring out the delicate aromas and flavours of a fun fizz, or complexity and toastiness of a vintage champagne.

- Press Association

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