Posted on

What is English Sparkling Wine?

English Sparkling Wine may not trip off the tongue or sound as romantic as Champagne, but it does score well for describing exactly what you are buying. So, if you buy a bottle of English Sparkling Wine, guess what? It will contain wine made from English grapes, that has bubbles in it. Simple!

However, you may want to know a bit more – say, is it like Champagne, or Cava, or Prosecco, or totally different?

Nyetimber 1086 English Sparkling Wine

Types of ESW

Well, the vast majority – over 90% – of English Sparkling Wine is similar to Champagne. Bubbles get into the wine by the same method as Champagne and the same grape varieties in Champagne are used. The advantage is that you’re not paying a premium for having the “Champagne” brand on the bottle!

There are a handful of English Sparkling Wines made the same way as Prosecco, although they are all artisanal wines made in small batches in the same way that top-end Prosecco is made.

England doesn’t produce an enormous amount of wine by international standards, averaging 12 million bottles a year for the past few years. However, 70% of it is sparkling. That’s still a drop in the (sparkling wine) ocean given that Champagne produces around 300 million bottles a year!

This is all a pretty modern phenomenon though. English Sparkling Wine didn’t really get going until the turn of the millennium, after Nyetimber put English Sparkling wine on the radar by winning international awards. Before this, most English wine was still, white, often sweet, and sadly, often not fantastic. How things have changed in a short time!

What have you got?

Grape Britannia stocks over 80 English Sparkling Wines, explore our current selection here. We have lots of award winning wines, but also wines from smaller producers that have yet to become famous. Find them and enjoy them before they get famous and put their prices up!

Find our more about this topic here.