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Brut Sparkling Wine

The companion and main attraction of events, special occasions, aperitifs and parties with friends and family, Brut sparkling wine is the most famous and widespread category of bubblies in the world. Technically, this term identifies one of the seven classifications that are based on sugar content, which, in this case, must contain a residue of less than 12 grams/litre. Whether it be Champagne, Franciacorta, Prosecco or Trento DOC, the term does not depend on the type of wine, the vineyard used or the method of production, but is simply an international expression for classifying sparkling wine. Thanks to a low and almost imperceptible dosage that does not affect the freshness and drinkability of the wine, making it easy to pair with food, it is one of the most frequently consumed and loved styles by both enologists and the public.

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The companion and main attraction of events, special occasions, aperitifs and parties with friends and family, Brut sparkling wine is the most famous and widespread category of bubblies in the world. Technically, this term identifies one of the seven classifications that are based on sugar content, which, in this case, must contain a residue of less than 12 grams/litre. Whether it be Champagne, Franciacorta, Prosecco or Trento DOC, the term does not depend on the type of wine, the vineyard used or the method of production, but is simply an international expression for classifying sparkling wine. Thanks to a low and almost imperceptible dosage that does not affect the freshness and drinkability of the wine, making it easy to pair with food, it is one of the most frequently consumed and loved styles by both enologists and the public.

Sparkling Brut: a Category, a Style, a Dosage

To fully understand the meaning of brut sparkling wine, it is necessary to take a small step back and learn more about the production method. The creation of a bubbly begins, as with every bottle, with an alcoholic fermentation, which transforms the sugar present in the grape must into alcohol. The production process for still red and white wines continues with possible ageing in steel tanks, wooden barrels or terracotta amphoras, while sparkling wines undergo a second alcoholic fermentation that can take place in the bottle (Classic or Champenoise Method) or in autoclaves at constant pressure (Martinotti or Charmat Method). This second stage, more generally known as prise de mousse, is preceded by the addition of the famous liqueur de tirage, which is a mixture of varying amounts of sugar, yeast and other mineral substances. The added yeasts transform the sugar into alcohol and carbon dioxide, which results in the development of the typical sparkling bubbles. At the end of the second fermentation, when the sugar has practically been completely transformed, the winemaker or chef de cave can add liqueur d'expedition (particularly in the Classic Method). The composition of this liqueur is kept secret and includes the addition of sugars and other substances, such as brandy and aged wine.

This is how the scale based on residual sugar was introduced:

  • Pas Dosé or Brut Nature: less than 3 g/l (no dosage)
  • Extra Brut: 0-6 g/l
  • Brut: 6-12 g/l
  • Extra Dry: 12-17 g/l
  • Dry: 17-32 g/l
  • Demi Sec: 32-50 g/l
  • Sweet: more than 50 g/l

It is clear, therefore, that the brut sparkling wine category is placed in the middle range of the bubblies that tend to be dry, with a very slight dose of sugar that softens the taste but does not influence the fresh, lively and pleasantly sharp profile of the type.


The Production in France and Italy

In France, when one thinks of the world of sparkling wines, the legendary Champagne immediately comes to mind. Synonymous with luxury and prestige, it is certainly the most famous and appreciated brut sparkling wine in the world, thanks to a long tradition, a precise production method and a suitable territory, which have established it as the father of the type. Usually made from the area's three typical grapes, Meunier, Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, it has often been produced in this style since ancient times, and is still appreciated by a large number of consumers, as sales in recent years have shown. Other sparkling wines from France are the Cremants, which are produced in Burgundy and Alsace from grapes typical of the area or from varieties from the Champagne region, and which are often blended in this style.

In Italy, following in the footsteps of the French, the most famous are the sparkling Franciacorta, Prosecco and Trento DOC wines.

The first is produced in the area of the province of Brescia using the Classic Method from Pinot Noir, Pinot Blanc and Chardonnay grapes. It is often sold as Brut and is one of the most important Italian sparkling wines. The reason for its success lies in the great research, passion and innovation that have characterised the work of many producers in recent decades, such as Berlucchi, Bellavista, Contadi Castaldi, Cà del Bosco, Monte Rossa and many others.

The Prosecco is the symbol of Italian sparkling wine, which fascinates for its simplicity, freshness and conviviality. It is produced from Glera grapes using the Martinotti Method in the green hills of the Veneto region around the town of Treviso (a UNESCO World Heritage Site), particularly in the Conegliano-Valdobbiadene area. It is particularly appreciated in its Extra-Dry version, although the Brut production has increased recently.

The Trento DOC, as the name suggests, is confined to the area of the province of Trento and is produced with the Classic Method from the typical Champagne and Franciacorta blends. This results in a fresh, elegantly-structured mountain bubbly, which in recent years has become an international standard of excellence thanks to a high-quality production that was launched by Ferrari and continued by other major producers, such as the Brut Altemasi. In Italy, the production of Brut sparkling wines can also be found in the Upper Langhe, the Oltrepò and many other regions in the centre-south of the country.


Recommended Pairings

This wine, with its low sugar content, is a great addition to the table, easily accompanying a wide range of dishes, from starters to desserts.

Best served chilled at a temperature of between 6°C and 10°C in the famous Flute glasses, this wine is a perfect match for aperitifs with appetizers, tartare, sliced meats and cheeses, as well as being a great choice for the everyday table. It is excellent with fried food, cold and hot fish starters, meatballs and savoury pies. It makes a great impression when paired with creamy first courses, such as seafood risotto, pasta allo scoglio and pasta with vegetable sauces. When particularly intense, we also recommend it with red and white meat, grilled fish or fish in sauce. And finally, why not enjoy a Brut sparkling wine with pastries or cakes?

The only dishes it might clash with are the sharp and spiced dishes of ethnic cuisine, which require a different pairing.

Looking for Brut sparkling wine on offer online? Callmewine offers a wide selection at the best prices. Discover the one that best suits your taste and have it delivered conveniently right to your door.