Once a local specialty of Venice and northeastern Italy, sparkling Prosecco has recently become an international sensation and a popular pick for ringing in the new year.

Like all sparkling wines, Prosecco is made from grapes that are picked when under-ripe in order to preserve crisp acidity and prevent the development of excess alcohol during fermentation. Unlike others, though, Prosecco is made from the Italian glera grape, once named for its home village of Prosecco, near Trieste.

While almost all of the world’s finest sparkling wines are made using a laborious and time-consuming technique known as the Champagne method, Prosecco is produced by a far more economical, efficient, and expeditious process: the Charmat method. One of the appeals of Prosecco has always been its faint sweetness, which gives its orchard fresh apple and pear flavors succulence and charm. But as Prosecco matures as a serious sparkling wine contender, drier styles like this one are emerging, featuring a sharper through-line of vibrant acidity and a more quenching food-friendly finish.

This example contains less than 12 grams of sugar per liter, and therefore qualifies for the prestige legal status of “Brut,” which has long been the realm of more ambitious Champagne-style sparklers. It also offers more flavor complexity than most in this price range, with subtle aromas that reach beyond simple tree fruits to suggest jasmine tea, pine nuts, or even white pepper.

Maschio Prosecco ‘Brut’

$10.99; 11% alcohol

PLCB Item #3332

Sale price through Jan. 3, 2021; regularly $13.99.

Also available at:

Wine Warehouse in Sicklerville, N.J. — $11.09

Canal’s Bottlestop in Marlton, N.J. — $11.09

Berkley Fine Wine & Spirits in Clarksboro, N.J —$14.49