The Valdo Prosecco Brut DOC is a Sparkling wine produced from the Glera grape in the Prosecco DOC a short distance away from Venice, Italy. With Prosecco it is common to see non-vintage wines, so you will not often see a vintage date but you will see the initials DOC or DOCG. The DOC is basically the Italian Wine Commission and they are responsible for formulating vineyard and wine production regulations and also outlining which boundaries comprise the Italian wine districts. The DOCG, the G stands for guaranteed, designates the prime growing areas and administers stricter rules and regulations for these locations. Now, they are not guaranteeing you will like the wine, just that the grapes were grown in what they deemed the best areas and the strict rules were followed. A well-made DOC Prosecco tastes great, a well-made DOCG Prosecco tastes great too. Prosecco is Bubbly or in Italian, Spumante, and it is not produced in the same way as Champagne. Like Champagne, Prosecco is fermented twice, but here the 2nd fermentation occurs in huge pressurized tanks. The tanks are basically very, very large autoclave, the thing that sterilized medical equipment and tattoo needles. Not the most romantic method, but it works well and is much faster at producing bubbles than Champagne. 2nd fermentation occurs with Champagne when they fill each bottle with wine that has been fermented once, then add a measured amount of yeast and sugar to each bottle. 18 months, 2 years, 3 years maybe more and you get Champagne. The Valdo Prosecco Brut DOC was in the autoclave for 4 months and then bottled and aged for another month before release. The Prosecco method (called Charmat) is a quicker and easier way to make Bubbly, but that doesn’t mean it does not taste delicious in its own right. As a matter of fact they sell more Prosecco by volume than Champagne, but since Champagne is considerably more expensive it still leads in dollar amount. The Valdo Prosecco Brut DOC has been around since 1926 and has been the best-selling Prosecco in Italy for the last 15 years. The alcohol content is 11%.

The color is a pale gold with loads of energetic tiny bubbles (with Prosecco the smaller the bubbles the longer it spent in the autoclave, if the bubbles are relatively large they may have rushed things). The nose is, if citrus and fruit could make a French perfume then this may be it, lemons, peach, apples, lime, pear and spice. Brut means dry or not sweet and they were not kidding, this is a taut, focused, but fruit-forward Bubbly. It tastes of lemon, grapefruit, kiwi, green apple, pear. The mid-palate brings solid minerality (there is a real mineral water aspect to this Bubbly),  and a late hit of juicy peach. The acidity is well-balanced, sometimes Prosecco can be a little sharp. The finish is mild, but lasts.

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I can see why the Valdo Prosecco Brut DOC is #1 in Italy (though the extra dry versions probably sell better over there, they like their Bubbles a little sweet), it’s a well-made, very tasty Sparkling wine that should be found for around 12 buck, that’s a good value. The acidity is balanced enough to make this a terrific sipping Bubbly, everyone talks about pairing wine with food, but I suspect that more Prosecco get sipped on its own than with a meal. Keep this one in mind when looking for Bubbly for the holidays.

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Don’t tell anyone, but there is absolutely no correlation between the cost of wine and the quality of wine.