Buying wine is a tricky situation for many people. It is especially challenging when it comes to the sparkling wine versus champagne debate. Picture: Supplied
Buying wine is a tricky situation for many people. It is especially challenging when it comes to the sparkling wine versus champagne debate. Picture: Supplied

How to distinguish champagne from other sparkling wines

By Lutho Pasiya Time of article published Feb 21, 2020

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Buying wine is a tricky situation for many people. It is especially challenging when it comes to the sparkling wine versus champagne debate. 

We spoke to a champagne expert and owner of Liquor Emporium, Oscar Masubelele who shared with us a few tips on how you can distinguish champagne from other sparkling wines. 

Masubelele said always check the label to make sure that your champagne is the real thing, that It should state the origin of the wine and how it was made together with the following mandatory information. 

  • Name of the producer or company name, followed by the name of the commune where that producer is registered (plus the trading address, if different) and the country of origin (France), 

  • The registration and code number issued by the CIVC preceded by two initials that indicate the category of the producer.

  • Batch code (sometimes stamped on the bottle itself). Allergen content (eg sulphur dioxide, sulphites, etc – sometimes mentioned on the back label). 

  • The warning ‘Drinking even small amounts of alcohol when pregnant can harm your unborn child’. 

  • The Green Dot symbol indicates that the collection and sorting of packaging waste are financed by producers and retailers. 

  • Where appropriate, the vintage and specific details relating to the type of Cuvee (whether Blanc de Blancs, Rosé, Blanc de Noirs, etc.). 

  • The producer may also display other optional information, such as the varietals used, date of disgorgement, sensory characteristics, suggested food-and-wine pairings, etc. 

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