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Traditional Method Italian sparkling wines: Panel tasting results

Our judges enjoyed the quality and consistency of these excellent sparkling wines from around Italy, though there was a measure of frustration at a lack of availability...

Andrea Briccarello, Michael Garner and Anthony Rose tasted 95 wines with two outstanding and 44 highly recommended.

Entry criteria: producers and agents were invited to submit sparkling wines made by the traditional method from specified regions in Piedmont, Lombardy, Veneto, Trentino, Emilia Romagna, Puglia and Sicily

Traditional-method sparkling: Italy’s top-tier regions

Franciacorta 2,902ha; nearly 18 million bottles; DOC since 1967, promoted to DOCG in 1995

Trento 1,012ha; almost 9m bottles; DOC since 1993

Oltrepò Pavese 122ha; less than 500,000 bottles; DOC since 1970, promoted to DOCG in 2007

Alta Langa 106ha; a little more than 500,000 bottles; DOC since 2002, promoted to DOCG in 2011

Top scoring traditional method Italian sparkling wines

The judges

Andrea Briccarello

Briccarello is business development manager at specialist on-trade wine merchant Jascots. Formerly head sommelier and wine buyer for the Galvin restaurant group, he also worked previously as a brand manager for Bisol Prosecco, and has been a regular DWWA judge since 2010.

Michael Garner

Garner has worked in the wine business for 40 years, mostly specialising in the wines of Italy. He is co-owner of Italian wine specialist Tria Wines, and is a DWWA Regional Chair for northern Italy. Garner is author of Amarone and the Fine Wines of Verona, and co-author of Barolo: Tar and Roses

Anthony Rose

Rose is a widely published journalist and author, a founder member of The Wine Gang, and the DWWA Regional Chair for southern Italy. He is currently working on a new book, Fizz! Champagne and the Sparkling Wines of the World (Infinite Ideas), and he publishes his own blog at www.anthonyrosewine.com

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