Pierre Hourlier Wines
Posted on November 06, 2018 by Pierre Hourlier Wines

  
Crémant is a sparkling wine, which is produced in France, using the same methods as Champagne and Cava. Crémant can be produced in 8 different wine regions - including Alsace, Bordeaux, Loire, Bourgogne and Jura. With increasing popularity, low prices and good reputation, we wanted to discover the difference between Crémants and Champagne.

 

Crémant Vs Champagne

Champagne refers to the sparkling wines from Champagne, whereas Crémant is produced from other French wine regions. Both wines are produced using the same wine producing methods (Traditional) and both hold similar notes of biscuit flavours.
    
Methode Traditionelle refers to the winemaking process which is used for Champagne and Crémant. This method requires the second fermentation with the lees (sediment from the second fermentation) to be in the bottle. The sediment is normally made up of yeast, which helps to give these wines their natural fizz. This process also requires ageing of at least 12 months before these can be sold, to allow the sediment to ferment properly and create the sparkling ability in these wines.
    
Champagne is known for its sparkling wines, with high guidelines to produce quality wines. The history of Champagne dates back to the 19th Century, where Champagnes were sweet, instead of dry. Crémants, although their guidelines may be a little more relaxed, can still hold the great quality which Champagne holds. Crémants are almost always cheaper than Champagne and are thought to be just as good.

  

   

The guidelines for the production of Crémant are:

  • Hand-harvested Grapes.
  • The second fermentation must occur in the bottle.
  • White Crémant cannot exceed the sugar dosage of 50g per liter (same as Champagne).
  • Must be aged for at least 12 months before being sold.
  • Can be either White or Rosé, except for Crémant de Die and Crémant du Jura, which are only permitted to produce white Crémants.
      

  

Crémant d’Alsace

Crémant d’Alsace means ‘Sparkling Wine from Alsace’. This region makes up approximately 45% of all Crémant production, producing approximately 40 million bottles annually, making this the largest contributor towards the Crémant production. Crémant d’Alsace was recognised as an official Appellation in 1976, however, have been winemaking for approximately 2000 years.
  

Crémant de Bordeaux

Crémant de Bordeaux means ‘Sparkling Wine from Bordeaux’. Although Bordeaux do not produce mainly Crémants, because of the success of their still red wines. Crémant de Bordeaux was recognised as an official Appellation in April 1990, however, have been producing sparkling wines for around 100 years.
  
The typical features of a Crémant de Bordeaux wine includes nutty notes with a honey nose. The wines are likely to have more lees (sediment from the second fermentation) than other crémant wines, however, these normally come out when the cork is popped off.
   
  

Keywords To Look Out For

  • Appellation - AOC approved area where the wine is grown, with specific regulations for winegrowers.
  • Blanc - White Wine, produced from white wine grapes.
  • Brut - Very Dry Wine.
  • Chateau or Domaine - The Vineyard the wine comes from.
  • Demi-Sec - Medium-Dry Wine.
  • Methode Traditionelle - Traditional Winemaking which is also used for Champagne and Cava.
  • Sec - Dry Wine.
  • Vintage - The year the wine was produced in.
    


  

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