Effervescence is the mark of identity of Champagne wines – the quintessential expression of their magical quality.
A delicate, complex process
Sustained, durable yet delicate bubbles create a fine first impression of the wine. A disappointing display of bubbles, on the other hand, may have the opposite effect.
Effervescence lies at the heart of Champagne – and no-one understands better than the Champagne makers themselves just how complex and delicate a process it is. Over the centuries they have mastered its baffling intricacies and made the process entirely their own. Thanks to their patient observations, effervescence is no longer the mystery it once was in terms of:
- Sensory characteristics.
The ‘mot juste’
The French prefer the word ‘effervescence’ to describe the bubbles in Champagne because they feel it has the right connotations of movement and liveliness but also intensity and joy.They distinguish between ‘effervescence’ and ‘pétillant’ (sparkling), which suggests the fizzing bubbles at the surface, or ‘mousse’, that suggests images of a creamier, more stable substance. Texte à valider
To a scientist, effervescence refers merely to the formation of the bubbles and not to the mousse that follows. It is for all that very basis of the entire Champagne-making process: the goal of the ‘méthode Champenoise’ and the touch of magic that gives the wines their quintessential expression.