So excited to have joined this virtual trip to the Conegliano Valdobbiadene Prosecco Superiore DOCG wine region.

A huge thanks to @micheleshah, @giuliapussini @awe and of course all the Italian team and producers for organising this amazing visit.

From the history of this area in the Veneto region of North-East Italy to the creation of the DOCG for the heartland of this area in 2009 with its 15 communes, 43 rives (crus) and of course the 107ha subzone of Superiore di Cartizze.  Since 2019 the area has been recognised by UNESCO.

Then back on the virtual bus to learn more about the challenging ‘heroic’ viticulture of the area due to the hogback landscape, its mild climate and diverse soils creating micro-zones yielding wines with different characteristics.

In the winery we learnt more about the rustic and vigorous, floral, fruity and semi-aromatic Glera grape which has to make up 85% of Prosecco Superiore alongside up to 15% of the indigenous Glera Lunga, Verdiso, Perera and Bianchetta Trevigiana varieties or the internationally well-known Pinot Noir and Chardonnay.  All with a maximum yield of 13.5K kilos/ha.

The wines are made using a reworked version of the Martinotti or Charmat method which allows the producer to keep the typicity, freshness and fruitiness of Glera in the finished wine.  Whole bunches of grapes are usually hand-picked and then placed in special presses that gently extract the free-run juice which is naturally clarified before the first fermentation with natural yeasts.

The second fermentation takes place in autoclaves for about 4 weeks, depending on the style required, before bottling under pressure.

We were lucky enough to taste (along with the producers, oenologues, Giulia, Michele, Sarah Abbott MW and Madeleine Waters) 10 different wines (alongside 2 local cheeses) which gave us a great overview of not only the differences between the various rives and cartizze but also the different styles (Extra Brut, Brut, Extra Dry and Dry), specialities such as  ‘Sui Lieviti’ on the lees Col Fondo, Uvaggio Storico and vintages.

Very much looking forward to sharing this knowledge and helping others to understand that Prosecco Superiore DOCG has very little to do with the basic Prosecco DOC in terms of quality and taste.

I’ll be organising a Champagne, English Sparkling and Conegliano Valdobbiadene Prosecco Superiore comparative tasting and I know these wines will be a revelation!

Thanks again

Sue

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