Sparklers trump Champers on volume

18 April, 2008

UK drinkers are buying more sparkling wine than Champagne, latest figures

show .

In the past five years, volume sales of sparkling wine have risen

44% compared

with 24% for Champagne, according to Mintel research. Value also rose 27% between 2002 and 2007.

The improving quality of sparkling wine and its relatively low price compared

with Champagne are thought to be driving the

increase.

"For many, sparkling wine is now seen as a really enjoyable treat in its own right, and the fact that it costs only a few pounds more than a regular bottle of wine is

an added bonus," said Mathilde Dudouit, senior market analyst at Mintel.

"Champagne used to be the only accepted choice and sparkling wine was simply seen as a second-rate imitation.

"But sparkling winegrowers have now turned the market around by producing consistently good quality wines and giving people a much greater variety of wines to choose from."




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Talking terroir

When Bordeaux was in fashion, it seemed almost logical that we should fetishise winemakers. Here were people responsible for brilliant acts of blending, across large estates and multiple grape varieties, including superstars such as cabernet sauvignon and merlot. These days, fashion has moved on and pinot noir is ascendant. As a result, the star of the winemaker has fallen and we find ourselves following a new star in the sky: terroir.

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