When the Prosecco DOC was written into law in 2009, along with two DOCGs – the hilly prominences of Asolo and Conegliano Valdobbiadene – it meant that Prosecco could now be produced in a 250km-wide zone encompassing nine provinces, from Vicenza in Veneto to Trieste in Friuli Venezia Giulia.
It was a vast expansion from the traditional centre of production of Conegliano Valdobbiadene, which had been recognised as a DOC since 1969. Whether this was down to the need to embrace the town named Prosecco, located in Trieste, to justify the naming of the new DOC, or that the minister of agriculture responsible for signing on the dotted line, Luca Zaia, was from Conegliano (and the following year was appointed president of Veneto, a position he has held ever since), the fact is that these game-changing moves turned Prosecco into a powerhouse whose ascent seems unstoppable.
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But, nearly 15 years on, the key questions are: have consumers begun to tire of Prosecco’s typical apple, pear and flowers profile; and is there more to this area than affordable bubbles?