Are Champagne and Sparkling Wine Different?


Do you like to please your taste buds with bubbly drinks on some special occasions? But, which drinks should you choose? Champagne or sparkling wine? Is Champagne a sparkling wine? You must learn about major differences between these drinks. Let us help you clear your queries about sparkling wine and Champagne.

Champagne is manufactured in the French region, Champagne. You can consider a bottle of Champagne as the sparkling wine. However, not every type of sparkling wine can be called Champagne. So, the term ‘Champagne’ is not as much about the winemaking process itself. It is relevant to the geographical region. From a legal perspective, it is a sparkling wine.

Know about the fermentation process:

Champagne is different from other wines because producers need to abide by some rules to make delicious bubbly drinks. The traditional method of making Champagne is very complex. Producers have to press the hand picked grapes twice in a fully covered setting. They place the properly blended juice in cellars. They use bottles for the secondary fermentation. By creating and capturing carbon dioxide, they carbonate the drink. This process allows the Champagne to become yeasty and gain crispy acidity. 

Grapes used for Champagne:

A standard Champagne is made by blending grapes like:

  • Pinot Meunier 
  • Chardonnay
  • Pinot Noir

The Champagne region in France has rich soil to cultivate these grapes. The grapes allow producers to develop a unique aroma and complexity of the alcoholic drink. That is why you enjoy refreshing effervescence and delectable taste while sipping Champagne. Moet is a fine choice for those who love to drink Champagne.

Grapes used for sparkling wine:

Sparkling wine has different varieties ranging from Italian to Spanish.

Cava or the Spanish sparkling wine, has smaller bubbles. The most important characteristic is that it has a balance of creaminess and freshness. Although the production processes of Cava and Champagne are quite similar, grapes used for the former are:

  • Parellada
  • Pinot Noir
  • Macabeo
  • Monastrell

Glera grapes are the main ingredient of Prosecco, a popular Italian wine. Larger bubbles are the characteristics of this wine. Producers use large tanks and implement the Charmat method for production. 

Most sparkling wines in Australia contain a blend of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay grapes.

In Germany and Austria, Sekt is the sparkling wine, and producers use stainless steel containers for fermentation. Pinot Blanc, Pinot Gris, and some other grapes are essential for producing Sekt.

Taste of Champagne and sparkling wine:

Champagnes give you a refreshing taste that has a touch of lively acidity. However, you will also experience fruity notes (such as green apples) and nutty flavors.

However, as sparkling wine has different varieties, you have to taste each of them to get the genuine flavor. The sweetness level varies depending on the type of sparkling wine you have chosen. For instance, the labels of some sparkling wine bottles show ‘Brut’. It means the sparkling wine tastes dry without the perception of sweetness. 

So, you have now understood the difference between sparkling wine and Champagne. Compare these drinks to buy the right one.