Time Is Of the Effervescence

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We admit it…We’re fervent fans of fizz. We adore sparkling wines of all kinds. Our brother knows this and recently dug deep into his pockets to come up with two bottles of a highly rated Champagne as gifts for us. Oolala! It was magnificent sipping. But probably not to be repeated for some time. Why? Because our pockets aren’t as deep as our brother’s.


The bubblies we’ve recently been quaffing are quite delicious and satisfying…and can easily fit into the most meager wine budget. These particular sparkling wines are less expensive because, for one thing, they take less time to make.


Champagnes (and other sparklers made in the same “traditional” method) start out as still wines and are put into bottles, where (with the addition of a little sugar and yeast) a second fermentation takes place. (Aha! The bubbles!)


Then the Champagnes are aged, and the bottles are continually turned by hand so that they end up in a vertical, upside-down position. By this time (anywhere from 9 months to several years), the sediment that has formed collects in the neck of the bottle. The sediment is quickly removed, and the bottles are recorked. Whew!


Many cheap…uh, we mean “well-priced” sparkling wines get their bubbles in pressurized tanks and are ready for bottling and shipping immediately. And we can’t get our hands on them fast enough. We figure we can buy about ten bottles for every one that our brother buys.




Barbara and Beverly