Transfer Method for Making Sparkling Wine
This is one of the methods used for making sparkling wine. In general terms, the wine is made and then bottled, as in the Champagne method, after which it is handled in a similar fashion. But when the time comes for the second cork to be inserted, the first corks are removed and the wine is decanted into a vat or tank, being kept under pressure so that the sparkle is not lost. Then, the deposit having been left in the large receptacle, the wine is rebottled and the second cork put in. The method is successful when used for the production of wines that will not benefit by the detailed care followed in the making of a Champagne method wine. It seems to have certain advantages over the Charmat method because the fermentation does take place in bottle – the small receptacle – rather than a vat or tank. It is inevitable, however, that the transference of the wine from tank to second bottle must involve both bulk handling and a certain exposure (even under pressure), so that authorities appear to consider that some of the intense vivacity and possibly some of the delicate attributes of the wine may thereby be lost.
Many good wines, however, are made in this way, including some of the German sparkling wines, and it is a process much followed in the U.S. In the latter country, where the regulations governing the use of the term ‘Champagne1 are not in force as they are in Europe, the wines made by the transfer method can usually be identified by their bearing on their labels the phrase ‘fermented in bottle’. A Champagne method wine will have the description ‘fermented in this bottle’. In wine regions where labour is cheap and the technical equipment of a winery considerable, its use has many obvious economic advantages.