Wine Talk

Snooth User: jtryka

Sparkling Red Wines, is this a hot new trend?

Posted by jtryka, Jun 9, 2012.

So I am mainly a dry red wine drinker, so I hardly ever get into sparling wines outside the annual bottle of Asti Spumante at New Years Eve, but twice today I encountered a red sparkling wine, something I never thought of before.

I went to two stores today that were having some informal tastings.  World Market, a national chain was having a nice tasting and had one sparkling red, thought I don't recall what it was (I ended up buying 3 bottles of Lodi old vine Zinfandel).  Then the second tasting was at G.B. Russo's, my favorite local wine and food store, and they also had one.  Theirs was a 2011 Roscato Rosso Dolce, which apparently was a wine that was featured at the Olive Garden of all places, but the restaurant chain had an exclusive distribution agreement that ended this year, so now it's available in stores.

I tasted it, and it was sweeter than I usually like, but not intolerable, and would make a nice refreshing wine for the summer months.  So for $10 I bought a bottle and figured I'd have some excuse to invite some friends over for a cookout this summer!

So is this some new trend that I missed?  Has anyone else heard much about sparkling red wines?



Reply by GregT, Jun 9, 2012.

Lambrusco? They've done it for many years in Italy. Also Australia, where sparkling Shiraz isn't particularly uncommon.  Not always all that great tho.

Reply by EMark, Jun 9, 2012.

I've mentioned this in the past.  Thornton Winery in the Temecula Valley has a red sparkler called Cuvee Rouge.  I've used it as an accompaniment to Thanksgiving Turkey, and it works quite well.

Reply by lakenvelder, Jun 9, 2012.

Sparkling wines have been trending in the last year. Italy exports in sparkliking wines have tripled this past year. 

Reply by dmcker, Jun 9, 2012.

Sparkling syrahs out of Oz are interesting to explore, though relatively hard to find in the States. A few very good ones, a spread of good ones, and a dross of dodgy ones, thus my use of the word 'explore', but they can pay off when one of the better ones is found. Great for BBQ. Xmas down in Oz is in their summertime, and sparkling syrah often ends up being a libation of choice at that time.

Also as Greg says, Lambrusco has been around forever. That's also a wine where it's worthwhile to learn to separate the wheat from the chaff.  But one of its good ones can also be refreshing in the summer.

It's interesting to see how much Olive Garden can impress the minds of curious consumers who may not have previously had the opportunity to explore off the beaten path in European wines. Their moscato has certainly made an impression, now the sparkling red that jtryka introduces....

Reply by zufrieden, Jun 10, 2012.

Quality depends on the human effort employed: ergo, there is no reason to believe that a sparkler made from red grapes that is allowed to import the pigments from said fruit cannot be of the highest quality.  The situation today is that demand for such a product has yet to emerge.  If it does, human ingenuity and the train of supporting cast in its wake will take over and produce a nectar worthy of those mythical archtypes of Olympus. Most of the pedestrian product that has forced its way to my lips of late has not be anything more than forgetable, but that could change - and change quickly.

A little research might be in order to determine whether an exemplar exists to quick-start an industry intent on sparkling reds; alas, my time is limited so I leave that interesting expedition to you. But that should be fun.

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