• Extra Dry: In the twisted lexicon of wine terms, these words, on a Champagne label, actually mean the wine is slightly sweeter than Brut. Go figure.
• Demi-sec, Doux: Sweeter styles of Champagne.
• Prosecco, Spumante, Asti Spumante: Italian sparklers; the spumantes are usually sweeter in style.
• Blanc de Blancs: A sparkler made exclusively from white grapes, usually chardonnay. Usually lighter in body.
• Blanc de Noirs: Made from red-wine grapes such as pinot noir and pinot meunier, though the skins are removed quickly so the wine remains white. Tend to be richer and more full-bodied.
• Méthode Champenoise: This designation means the secondary fermentation (the one that makes the bubbles) takes place in the bottle, not a giant holding tank.
Where to buy
Here is a partial list of locations where you can find a good variety of champagne and sparkling wines.
• Arrow Wine & Spirits: 2950 Far Hills Ave., Dayton | Washington Park Plaza, 615 Lyons Rd., Dayton
• Ray's Wine Spirits Grill: 8268 N Main St., Dayton
• The Wine Gallery: 5 W. Monument Ave., Dayton
• Dorothy Lane Market: 2710 Far Hills Ave, Dayton | 6177 Far Hills Ave., Dayton | 740 N. Main St., Springboro
• Bruning's Wine Cellar: 2476 Commons Blvd., Beavercreek
Keeping it real
Champagne producers in the Champagne region of France don't like it much when sparkling-wine producers elsewhere call their bubblies "Champagne," and, well... they do have a point.
Champagne is a region in France, and inside France, only wines that come from Champagne can be labeled "Champagne." "Chablis" and "Burgundy" are also prestigious wine-growing regions of France, but American wine companies, such as E&J Gallo, "borrowed" those names and slapped them on the labels of cheap wines, much to the astonishment — and chagrin — of the French.
So if you want to be totally accurate, there's no such thing as California Champagne or Ohio Champagne. Those are sparkling wines — but not true Champagnes. I mean, it'd be like some Canadian football team (or, say, a team from Michigan) calling themselves the "Ohio State Buckeyes."