Germany’s love affair with sparkling wines far pre-dates the current trend toward bubbles. In fact, German producers — names like Krug, Bollinger, Mumm and many more — were once the leading lights in Europe and significantly involved in the development of sparkling wines, including in Champagne. The VDP Prädikatsweingüter are now honouring this tradition through a new VDP.SEKT.STATUT, which adds the formal rigour of official classifications to the production of top-quality, handmade Sekts.
The VDP.SEKT.STATUT, ratified earlier this year, applies the association’s high quality standards from the realm of still wines to the production of sparkling wines. It is a helpful visible marker for conveying the quality and prestige of VDP sekts to the broader public. Only sekts that pass the association’s strict quality criteria and testing, akin to the tough regulations in Champagne, will be allowed to bear the VDP Sektsiegel, the VDP’s seal of approval for Sekt. During the introductory phase, parallel production of sekts with the VDP eagle symbol, i.e. without the new seal, will also be allowed.
The new VDP Sektsiegel necessitated the training of a cadre of Sekt auditors, schooled to identify and assess top quality in this distinctive type of winemaking. Each new auditor has spent recent months sampling sekts that will soon be approved to bear the new seal, and which represent the first exemplary bottles under the new statute. The VDP Weinbörse 2021 in Mainz will provide the international wine world with a chance to join sparkling wine masterclasses dedicated to illuminating the intricacies of the new statute.
“The VDP.SEKT.STATUT represents a real quality push for German Sekt. Our strict quality criteria correspond to the highest international requirements. The statute also provides space for our member estates to keep developing. The Sektsiegel is intended to put a spotlight on bellwether Sekts that are among the finest sparkling wines in the world,” says VDP President Steffen Christmann. “Our new VDP.SEKT.STATUT gives wine lovers in Germany and abroad a quality compass to help them differentiate between the broad offerings in the sparkling wine area.”