Reports of wine sales for the end of this year show a trend away from higher end Champagne towards less expensive sparkling wines, such as Cava.
While sales of Champagne from France have slipped considerably, figures for cheaper bubblies — such as proseccos from Italy, Spanish cavas and U.S. sparkling wines — have jumped, reflecting the kind of trading down that has gone on across the wine market, says analyst Jon Fredrikson.
“It’s just like consumers pushed the ‘reset’ button,” says Fredrikson, who tracks wine shipments at his Woodside-based Gomberg, Fredrikson & Associates. After a decade when consumers embraced more expensive, big-name brands “we’re back to a whole new reality. (They are) still drinking sparkling wines, but moving down to lower prices.”
I think there’s a lot of value in Cava, I’ve had a couple that I really liked (Mont Marçal Cava Gran Sarao Brut Cava comes to mind as a sub $10 fun, tasty crowd pleaser that also held the interest of the wine geeks). For a big party, I’m not shelling out $50 a bottle for folks that just want some fizzy wine; but for a small intimate dinner (which is what we’re doing this year with a few friends), we’ll break out the Heidsieck we’ve saved for a special occasion.
What are you drinking for the holiday? Have you found interesting sparklers from places other than France? Is Cava “trading down”?