The Three Keys!
Over my career I have learnt about the many facets of making fizz, for which in my opinion there are really three things to take into account.
Firstly the grape growing region plays a huge part. Cool climates work best to help retain the acidity needed for aging. Whether it be from latitude or altitude a cool to cold climate promotes the ideal fruit maturity, picking the grape bunches a little earlier than for still wines.
Next it’s all about the varieties. Classic grape varieties of Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier and Chardonnay have the runs on the board when it comes to making some of the best sparkling wines in the world.
Finally, tirage age or maturation time on yeast is the third key to perfecting a great bottle of sparkling. The extended yeast autolysis adds the secondary characteristics to the wine such as biscuits, toast and honey.
Thus, complex sparkling wine is truly a time honored process that is extremely rewarding when everything comes together.