Basics on Cap Classique

Cap Classique is the synonym for the exact same process for bottle fermented sparkling wine in South Africa. The words Methode Cap Classique describes that the wine was fermented for a second time in the bottle. The name Cap Classique of the acronym MCC can also be used. The name and Association was established in 1992 in South Africa with 14 members, long before the ruling was made in 1995 to protect the words Methode Champenoise.

The very first Cap Classique was produced by Simonsig in 1971 and in the mid 80’s saw the movement gain momentum and today there are approximately 130 producers producing Cap Classique. Currently the Association represents 82 active producers and it remains our ambition to get buy-in from all the other producers not members to give the Association a strong platform and having an opportunity to lobby any matters regarding MCC with the wine industry.

Current members represent 20 different geographical areas of the Western Cape. Any legal registered grape varieties are currently permitted (both white and red) for Cap Classique style wines in South Africa. This is done with the respect to Champagne and also to give a new world feel to members to develop blends uniquely South African.

Legal requirements: Minimum 3 Bars of pressure in the bottle, Currently minimum of 9 months on the lees. WE have support from the industry to make the minimum time on the lees 12 months and we believe that this will be written into legislation by 2014. Approximate +- 7 million bottles of Cap Classique is produced annually.

The Associations hold an annual base wine tasting to promote the quality of base wines going to bottle. Constructive criticism are shared at this annual workshop. We strive to have a technical seminar once a year. We also hold local generic bubbly festivals in key centers to promote the category to the consumer.


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