Franciacorta is Italy’s rival to Champagne and is generally regarded as Italy’s finest sparkling wine.
The Franciacorta wines share many similarities with Champagnes. Franciacorta, like Champagne, is both a geographic area as well as a sparkling wine. Franciacorta” is the only Italian ‘methode classique’ with the Denomination Origin Controlled and Guaranteed since 1995.
The sparkling Franciacorta wines are produced by the classic method of Champagne, in which a second fermentation takes place in the bottles. The journey before a bottle of Franciacorta is ready is a long one: seven months after the grapes are harvested and processed, yeasts and sugar are added to the wine at its first stage, then the wine is bottled before resting for at lesat 18 months as it lays to re-ferment before the dégorgement. For millèsimées, refermentation climbs to a 30 month minimum. Only then its delicious qualities can be experienced.
Franciacorta wines utilize the same grape varieties as Champagne, which are Chardonnay, Pinot Blanc (Pinot Bianco in Italian) and Pinot Noir (Pinot Nero in Italian). Also as in Champagne, the wines are categorized according to the amount of residual sugar, or sweetness of the wine. Moving from the driest to the sweetest, the individual categories are Extra Brut, Brut, Extra Dry, Sec and Demi-Sec.