Five fascinating wine facts from Peter McCombie

In this session Master of Wine, Peter McCombie led an interactive blind tasting with Champagne, and some sparkling alternatives, before explaining how to price, market and sell each selection. Today’s customers are looking for more than just ‘a glass of fizz’ – and this is a great way to meet their needs and boost sales.

We were intrigued about this session and asked Peter to share some wine facts to wet our appetite ahead of his session.

Did you know?

1. 42% of female premium wine drinkers drink Prosecco on a regular basis.

2. Prosecco and Champagne drive the UK market in bubbles, with Prosecco way ahead in volume growth, while Champagne growth in value is just ahead of the entire category.

3. Champagne bubbles form on dirt and impurities like cellulose fibres from polishing cloths, stuck to the side of the glass. Without them the Champagne would appear flat.

4. Some winemakers are reviving the old style Prosecco Col Fondo, according to writer Kerin O’Keefe. It is refermented in the bottle but not disgorged, so the wines are left on their lees. This yeasty residue leaves a fine sediment on the bottom (fondo in Italian) that imparts more complexity and flavor. These wines are currently labelled Conegliano Valdobbiadene DOCG, without the added term Superiore, which is reserved for wines that have at least 3.5 bars of pressure in the unopened bottle, while the Col Fondo generally have 2.5 bars.

5. While the still wines of Franciacorta can be traced back to Roman times, the first release of a sparkling wine was as recently as 1961, with DOC status awarded in 1967. Franciacorta has the strictest minimum aging requirements of any sparkling wine.

To see the live event content for this year you will need to register online. Registration will open later in the year. This will also give you access to The Bar and Pub Show, Conscious Hospitality Show and Catering Equipment Expo.