In the past couple of years, Prosecco has made a big boom in North America. It went from a sparkling wine that nobody had ever heard of (unless you were in North Eastern Italy), to a sparkler that is flying off the shelves. The reason why is simple, Prosecco offers a young and fresh sparkling wine that is inexpensive, and makes you feel like life is good whilst drinking it!
Champagne and other Sparkling wines are costly as they were often aged for years in a dank cellar developing character and complexity. Prosecco, on the other hand, is bottled and on the shelf on the spring following the harvest. Thus, with Prosecco, you get a light and infectious spirit that is a little sweeter than Champagne, but honestly, that seems to make your life feel a little sweeter as you’re drinking it.
Prosecco & Food Pairings
Prosecco uses the white wine grape ‘Prosecco’ and is produced in Veneto, Italy. On the lower spectrum of price, ($10 or so) you’ll get a dry to off-dry Prosecco that offers delicate fruit flavours and lots of bubbles. Prosecco that is priced $15 and higher often delivers ripe fruit flavours like pear, apple and citrus, often with a dash of nutty almond flavour.
Lower priced Prosecco is excellent as an aperitif, or can be perfectly paired with finger foods or desserts like birthday cake. Because it is low in alcohol, while still being crisp (due to a high acidity), it can cut through the richness of finger foods, and offer some relief from the sweetness of desserts. It’s also a marvellous pairing with a cheese tray, loaded with grapes, figs, dried apricots, and nuts such as almonds.
Higher priced Prosecco pairs great with these foods as well. However, if you are splurging on a higher end Prosecco, why not pair the more complex flavours with more complex foods. The acidity in Prosecco will cut through any cream sauce, or cheese, while the nutty almond flavour pairs excellent with nutty flavoured cheeses such as Gruyère, Gouda, or cheese ball made with nuts.
The low alcohol and high acidity also make Prosecco a great pair with Spicy Asian dishes, as it extinguishes the heat considerably, allowing you to enjoy all the flavours the dish has to offer.
Seafood and Prosecco is another classic pairing. The citrus notes act like a squeeze of lemon on the seafood. Battered Shrimp, Crab Cakes, Fish and Chips, and Fried Seafood (or just about anything fried and battered) pairs well too as the high acidity in the Prosecco cuts through the grease and cleanses the palate.
Finally, if you’re at home with your significant other and just relaxing on the couch with a bag of potato chips or popcorn, Prosecco will pair phenomenally well. Often when you eat buttered popcorn or chips, the first few bites are great, but what follows doesn’t offer the same experience as your mouth is so bogged down with oils and salt. Prosecco cleanses the palate and washes away all that oil and salt, ensuring each bite tastes as great as the first. Also, what better way is there to show your significant other that you enjoy their company with a glass of great sparkling wine.
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