The United Kingdom is bracing itself for a dry summer after a leading prosecco manufacturer warned that stocks of the Italian bubbly were drastically down.
Sales of Italian fizz spiked during the recession as cash-strapped punters turned from champagne to prosecco.
But Robert Cremonese, export manager of Italian prosecco producer Bisol, says a bad harvest has resulted in shortages - which could mean prices may drastically rise.
“Last year’s harvest was very poor, and down by up to 50 per cent in some parts, so there is a very real possibility of a global shortage,” he told The Drinks Business.
10 best proseccos
10 best proseccos
1/9 Waitrose San Leo
This pale, creamy-textured prosecco has flowery notes and a light peach flavour that makes it ideal for turning into a Bellini by adding peach juice. On its own, it is delicate, yet well-balanced and very easy on the palate, making it a great crowd-pleaser.£6.99, waitrose.com
2/9 Prosecco Asolo Bele Casel
Be sure to have a second bottle cooled and ready as this is so good that one will never seem enough, particularly if you’re drinking it with friends. Dry with clean, fresh fruit flavours including grapefruit and peach, at least you can console yourself, at 11 per cent proof, it’s relatively light in alcohol. £12.95, bbr.com
3/9 Aldi Valdobbiadene
This complex flavoured, stylish bubbly has an undertone of peach and apple, making it a great option as the Autumn sets in. Particularly refreshing and delicate, but also lightly creamy, it comes from North East Italy. £7.49, aldi.co.uk
4/9 M&S Prosecco Zardetto NV
M&S do an impressive range of proseccos, all of them boasting the hallmark lightness and fruity taste, but our vote goes to this particularly vibrant, off-dry and pronounced sparkling wine from the heart of the Congegliano hills, which makes an ideal apéritif or party wine.£11.99, marksandspencer.com
5/9 Prosecco Salatin Extra Dry
Even those who usually stay clear of sparkling wines, for fear of them tasting too acidic, seem to be turned by this stunning, light and delicate prosecco, which is fabulously aromatic and zesty. Enjoy this thirst quencher on its own or with seafood.£12.99, majestic.co.uk
6/9 Bisol Prosecco di Valdobbiadene Cartizze
This doesn’t come cheap, but it’s such a delicious sparkler that this faintly off-dry prosecco is well worth the extra money if you can afford it. Beautifully floral, with a slightly creamy nose, it is full on the palate, with a particularly elegant, uplifting finish.£31.99, selfridges.com
7/9 Rude Wines Prosecco Valdobbiadene
This award-winning dry fizz is an excellent value alternative to Champagne. Vibrant straw yellow in colour, it has an elegant floral bouquet and is fabulously fruity, while remaining refreshing on the palate.£12.99, rudewines.co.uk
8/9 Sainsbury’s Taste the Difference
Refreshing but not too dry, this is a perfect drink for warm days or evenings – anytime really. Particularly light and fruity, it is frequently on special offer, although a prosecco of this quality is still a bargain at just a tenner. £10, sainsburys.co.uk
9/9 Tesco Finest Bisol
This award-winning, deliciously soft sparkling wine is a top choice for a budget-friendly wedding drink, thanks to its wonderfully fresh and delicate taste of just-ripe pear flavours, along with its elegant finish and bubbles that aren’t too intense.£8.99, tesco.com
Mr Cremonese added that he was unsure “how big the problem was” as many négociants, a French term for a wine merchant, were holding onto their prosecco and using the shortage as “an opportunity to put prices up, in some cases by 50 per cent.”
Prosecco, an Italian white sparkling wine, is traditionally produced in the north of Italy around Conegliano and Valdobbiadene but since the 2000s the grapes have been grown as far afield as South America.