France still seth the standards by which most of the world’s finest wines are judged, but ar far as store sales are concerned, australian wines are rapidly moving into pole position.
For centuries France has been regarded as the leading wine country. It was almost universally considered that only French wines were good. This was unjust because countries such as Italy, Spain, Germany, Hungary, and Greece have long made wine of top quality but the French managed to persuade the world that their wines had something special, that bit of extra quality.
The system is simplicity itself: three rows of casks are piled up on top of each other in each criadera. The name solera is derived from suelo for the wine in the bottom row, which is the oldest of the three. The top row houses the youngest Spanish wine.
As wine is drawn of for bottling this is done from the lowest casks and the space created is then filled by wine from a cask that is one row higher. The space created in this cask is then filled by wine from the next row above.
Only a few of these wines, such as the Pongnicz, could compete with top quality Champagnes The other sparkling wines that are not made by the traditional method are also known as sparkling wine, and they can also be very tasty. Drinking temperature is 42.5-46.4°F (6-8°C).
The sweet South African wines such as Muscadel and Hanenpoot (Muscat of Alexandria) can be readily recommended.
The heavy and sultry wines that used to be have become somewhat fresher and more interesting.