We tend to think of sparkling wines as a special treat, a drink reserved for special occasions and the finest of foods. However, they are becoming more democratic and affordable than ever before. The rise in popularity of that famous Italian bubbly everyone loves, has encouraged suppliers to fuel our love affair with fizz, in the hope of becoming the next ‘Prosecco.’

The Challengers to Champagne

English Sparkling Wine, New World offerings and Crémant, are now easier to obtain than ever before. They are appearing on supermarket shelves of discounters like Aldi and Lidl, not just specialist shops and online retailers. Many of these are available for reasonable prices between £6-20.

Crémant fills this niche nicely. This is the little known sparkling wine that is produced in a similar way to Champagne in France. Most of the regions that produce still wines, usually always make a Crémant using their native grape varieties. From Bordeaux, to Burgundy and even the Rhône and Languedoc- they all produce their own take on the traditional ‘bottle fermented/aged’ style.

Not to be left behind in the past as ‘cheaper than Champagne,’ Cava has really upped quality efforts to lure drinkers away from Prosecco and New World fizz.

Fried Food and Fizz-What a Combination!

Personally, one of the greatest pleasures in life is a glass of something bubbly with fried or salty/fatty foods. Though some are fruitier or tarter than others, all sparkling wines are acidic. This is great for foods like these, as they are mouth-watering and refreshing- cutting through those oily characteristics and somehow making them feel less sinful as they cleanse your palette! These often also contain high levels of salt too, which softens the wine and helps bring out the flavour.

Why not try a glass of fizz with that great British takeaway, fish and chips? Or, how about Bubbly with a family bucket of fried chicken? Why not give whitebait or calamari a go? Or even just a bag of crisps or roasted peanuts!