Part 2-The Different Methods
While many of us are aware of the main methods of creating bubbles here are the official 7 methods recognized by the sparkling industry
Méthode Traditionelle or Traditional Method
This method is designated by the term "cava" in Spain, by "Metodo classico" in Italy,
“Cap Classique” in South Africa……
Phase 1 : Making the base wine. Whole clusters of healthy grapes are pressed. The press fractions are separated as a function of quality. Harvesting, grape transport and the press method used are all important. Presses are meticulously cared for and regulated by law.
Phase 2 : Transforming the still base wine into a sparkling wine.This transformation occurs “in this bottle."
During bottling (commonly known as tirage), the following are added to the base wine:
- Riddling agents.
This bottle fermentation is known as the “prise de mousse” and it leads to the following:
- Disappearance of the sugar
- Formation of alcohol (1.3% vol.)
- Production of carbon dioxide gas
- Formation of a deposit.
Bottle ageing (minimum 15 months)
Clarification in the bottle -riddling - turning the bottles to collect the deposit in the bottle neck (an 8 week time), or as in today's fast pace the use of gyropallettes (3-4 days)
Final phases :- Disgorging = removing the deposit from the bottle - Dosage = adding the expedition liqueur
- Corking = inserting the cork stopper- Wiring = placing a wire cap over the cork- Foiling, labelling.