Nothing makes New Year's Eve sparkle like a bit of the bubbly, and China has jumped onto the bandwagon in a big way.
"While red wines predominate in China," according to the international trade show Vinexpo's 2014 report, "white wines, roses and sparkling wines are growing－with a special focus on premium products at the top or mid-range."
"While overall wine consumption worldwide grew by 3.23 percent between 2008 and 2012, consumption of sparkling wines, which accounts for 7.9 percent, outpaced the overall segment, increasing by 5.66 percent."
"I think the numbers must be positive," says Sara Xiang, manager of Everwines, the retail shop for wine distributor Torres, "because we launched Taitinger FIFA bottles this year and sold very well."
Champagnes, the French standard for sparkling wines, have a strong appeal to Chinese buyers, but other types including Italy's prosecco and asti and Spain's cava appear more and more frequently on top wine lists and store shelves. The sweetness of sparkling wine can range from very dry "brut" styles to sweeter "doux" varieties.
China Daily asked Xiang to suggest three wines for New Year celebrations. Here's the list.
MIGUEL TORRES CHILE SANTA DIGNA ESTELADO SPARKLING ROSE
Price: 208 yuan
Region: Secano Interior
Grape varieties: Pais
Comment: Best Chilean sparkling wine in annual Wines of Chile Awards. One of the top 10 wines in The UK Press by the Drinks Business in February 2013.