About Sparkling Wines

Sparkling wine has effervescence - bubbles- that are the result of a secondary fermentation. This fermentation can take place in the bottle itself or in a tank, after which it is then bottled.

Sparkling wines are produced in many countries around the world; the most famous examples are from Champagne. The method used to create Champagne is known as the classic method outside this region and is used to produce bubblies such as Cava in Spain, Franciacorta and Alta Langa in Italy as well as the finest sparkling wines in countries such as the USA, New Zealand and Australia.

Sparkling wines with their bubbles are celebratory wines to be sure, but they are also among the finest food wines produced, as they can accompany a wide variety of foods. Sparkling wines range from extremely dry to very sweet and are produced in several versions from Blanc de Blancs (only white grapes) to Rosé, which have a copper, salmon or pink color.

Top Picks for Sparkling Wines

Vallformosa  Collecció Brut Rosé Pinot Noir
95 points
$22
Dusty silvery amber color. Fruity, attractive aromas and flavors of cranberry relish, herbal honey, and lilacs with a satiny, crisp, finely carbonated, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a complex, medium-long spiced pomegranate and coconut, blood orange and kiwi, and hint of herbal cherry lozenge finish with no oak. A rich and intricate rosé Cava with enticing layers of fruit, spice, and herbs.
Johnson Estate NV May Carbonated White Wine American
94 points
$15
Best Buy
Bright yellow straw color. Fruity aromas and flavors of grape jelly, wild lemon, and preserved peach with a round, crisp, fizzy, off-dry light-to-medium body and a seamless, medium-length roasted nuts, dried pineapple, and cream soda finish with coating, silky, soft tannins and a suggestion of oak. An exemplary sparkler with terrific effervescence and a nuanced approach to Vidal blanc.
Awards: 2017 Best Specialty Sparkling Wine
94 points $15 Best Buy
Bonaval NV Brut Rosado Cava DO
93 points
$10
Best Buy
Bright pink coral color. Aromas and flavors of white chocolate graham crackers, strawberries yogurt, plantain skin, and hint of rubber leaf with a supple, tangy, effervescent, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a compelling, medium-length pomegranate white raspberry relish, blood orange with cornichon, nut brittle, and wet limestone finish with a suggestion of oak. A rich flavorful cava with mouthwatering acidity.
93 points $10 Best Buy
Vallformosa  Collecció Brut Cava DO
93 points
$20
Best Buy
Brilliant yellow straw color. Aromas and flavors of candle wax, starfruit, and white mulberry jam with a lively, finely carbonated, dry-yet-fruity medium body and a smooth, complex, long melon, yellow apple, caramelized green pear, and coconut water finish. A sophisticated and nuanced Cava that is also simply delicious.
93 points $20 Best Buy
Philippe Prie NV Brut Tradition Champagne
93 points
Brilliant straw color. Minerally aromas of lemon oil, crushed stones, honey-nut brittle, and beeswax with a round, vibrant, finely carbonated, dryish light-to-medium body and an involved, long Belgian beer, kiwi-lime, and limestone finish with crunchy tannins and light oak. A delicately leesy champagne with striking minerality.
Glenora 2014 Blanc de Blanc Sparkling Chardonnay
92 points
$29.99
Light straw color. Fruity aromas of peach skin and dehydrated strawberry with a silky, lively, finely carbonated, dry light-to-medium body and a sleek, medium-length granny smith, lime zest, and Campari finish. A zippy little Blanc de Blanc; a prelude to a meal meant to impress.
92 points $29.99
Lunetta NV  Prosecco
92 points
$13.99
Best Buy
Pale straw color. Fruity, floral aromas and flavors of summer peach, honeysuckle, lilac, sweet basil, and starfruit with a silky, crisp, effervescent, dry-yet-fruity full body and a seamless, charming, medium-length sweet almond and sea salt finish with no oak. A tasty, crowd-pleasing prosecco with lovely depth of flavor.
92 points $13.99 Best Buy
Ruggeri 2016 Giustino B. Extra Dry Prosecco Superiore DOCG
92 points
$34.99
Bright silvery emerald straw color. Aromas of lemon soufflé, sweet anise, baked apple, sea shore, and citron with a glycerous, lively, effervescent, dry-yet-fruity light body and a polished, medium-long starfruit soda and sea salt finish with no oak. A velvety prosecco for elegant hors d’ouevres.
92 points $34.99
Yorkville Cellars 2016 Sparkling Brut Rosé Malbec
92 points
$36
Brilliant steely pink color. Fruity aromas and flavors of blueberry jam, toffee, ripe strawberries, and lemon curd with a velvety, vibrant, finely carbonated, fruity medium body and a smooth, stimulating, medium-long roasted nuts finish with fine, fruit tannins and a suggestion of oak. A sparkler with gobs of elegant fruit flavors to explore; both rich and light-on-its-feet.
Castellroig NV Brut Cava DO
92 points
$14.99
Best Buy
Clear straw green color. Fresh, yeasty aromas and flavors of greenhouse, cucumber, white flowers, palmier cookie, and dried tropical fruit with a round, vibrant, effervescent, dry-yet-fruity medium body and an appealing, medium-length finish with soft, fruit tannins. A rich and yeasty cava for celebrations and toasts.
Awards: 2017 Top 2 Best Spanish Cava
92 points $14.99 Best Buy