Above: the Glera grape, mighty mighty and letting it all hang out.
When I started out in this business in 1998, Prosecco was a wine known by few outside of northeastern Italy.
Back then, when someone handed party guests a glass of Prosecco in the U.S., it wasn’t uncommon that they would respond gleefully, “Champagne!”
Today, it’s not uncommon for the exact opposite to occur. And in many corners, Prosecco — in part thanks to its price-quality ratio and in part thanks to its ubiquity — has become the sparkling wine by antonomasia.
According to data published on Friday by the Italian wine trade publication Corriere Vinicolo and ISTAT (Italy’s national institute of statistics), Prosecco sales grew by 30% in 2013 and led Italian sparkling wine sales to a record high.
While Italian sparkling wine sales fell in Germany, a historically reliable market for the category, U.S. and U.K. sales were so strong that winemakers still managed to set new records. 2013 also saw nearly 80% growth in Italian sparkling wine sales in China.
It’s incredible to think that none of this was even conceivable fifteen years ago when a handful of Prosecco négociants set out to conquer the world.
I’ve posted an excerpted translation of the report on the Bele Casel blog. I hope you’ll find it as interesting as I did.
Mighty, mighty Prosecco, the little wine that could.