Food and drinks are essential to any holiday party—and for those whose favorite part of the season is its atmosphere that’s perfect for unwinding and merrymaking, a bottle of wine (or two or more) shouldn’t be missing from the menu.
With the “ber” months rolling in and signaling the start of yuletide celebrations, now is the best time to acquaint yourself with exquisite wine selections for every type of occasion. The Asti is a wine you can’t go wrong with—after all, it bears the Denominazione di Origine Controllata e Garantita appellation, which is the highest classification awarded to Italian wines. This title serves as a telltale sign of superior wine quality that roots from its grape variety, production area, and production method.
In Asti’s case, it pertains to the exceptional aromatic profile delivered by Moscato Bianco grapes exclusively cultivated in the Asti, Alessandria, and Cuneo provinces in Piedmont, Italy. This area includes the Vineyard Landscape of Langhe-Roero and Monferrato, a UNESCO World Heritage site.
There are two Asti wines yielded by Moscato Bianco grapes: The Moscato d’Asti, and the Asti Spumante. Both wines are perfect for holiday gatherings due to their versatility in food pairings. They go well with almost anything you can include in a party menu—from cheeses and desserts to spicy food, Asian dishes, oysters, cheese, and raw fish.
Here, we break down the party atmosphere that best matches each Asti wine, as well as the distinctive qualities that make them utterly irresistible to your tastebuds.
For a chill night of holiday cheers: The Moscato d’Asti
Casual meetups with friends call for a bottle of the Moscato d’Asti, a proud result of the Piedmontese winemaking tradition.
This vino frizzante features an inimitable aroma, balance, and natural sweetness with a low 4.5 to 6% alcohol content for just the right buzz. Its bouquet emits a rich and intense aroma with hints of sage, followed by fragrances reminiscent of acacia flowers, wisteria, orange, and mountain honey, with an undertone of spice and notes of elderberry, yarrow, and bergamot flowers. These light and crisp flavors make the Moscato d’Asti an excellent drink for unwinding and enjoying a casual, pressure-free setting.
The Moscato d’Asti features an inimitable aroma, balance, and natural sweetness with a low 4.5 to 6 percent alcohol content for just the right buzz.
Although it pairs well with a laidback atmosphere, creating the Moscato d’Asti is actually a meticulous process. First, Moscato Bianco grapes need to be harvested early by hand to preserve their fruity and floral scent. Its production then involves halting fermentation once the alcohol content reaches around 5% by volume and using lower pressure to capture the subtleties in taste and texture of uniquely vivacious sparkling wine.
For holiday sparkle and splendor: The Asti Spumante
A guaranteed crowd-pleaser like the Asti Spumante may be the best drink of choice for holiday parties with small, intimate groups in a more formal setting. This sparkling wine never fails to satisfy palates with its exceptional balance of delicate and intense flavors, combined with sweetness and fragrance that can please any guest.
The Asti Spumante is the product that made Moscato a household name worldwide, proving how well-loved it is among Italy’s finest wines. Like the Moscato grapes that it is made from, this sparkling wine has a fresh aroma with floral characteristics and notes of ripe fruit. Acacia, wisteria, orange, and bergamot flowers with hints of sage and lemon—these are just some of the scents you can easily recognize from the Asti Spumante.
Like the Moscato grapes that it is made from, this Spumante has a fresh aroma with floral characteristics and notes of ripe fruit.
Compared to Moscato d’Asti, the Asti Spumante has a slightly higher developed alcohol content ranging from 6% to 11% per volume. It is also available in different types based on the sugar content, namely Extra Dry, Dry, Brut, and Dolce.
The Asti wines: Representing celebration and tradition
Whether your wine of choice is the slightly fizzy Moscato d’Asti or the sparkling all-time favorite Asti Spumante, the Asti wines give you nothing but the highest quality drinks to enjoy for the holidays and other special occasions. Each sip lets you immerse in the unique and lively vibes of Asti and transports you to its traditions.
This top-tier quality is all thanks to the guidance of the Consorzio, a voluntary association that aims to promote, valorize, and safeguard Asti’s Designation. The Consorzio unites all Asti DOCG value chain members, including individual grape growers, vintners’ co-ops, winemakers, spumante makers, and bottlers. Together, they work to bring you the finest bottles of Asti wines for any celebration.
Visit the Asti DOCG website here to know more about the Moscato d’Asti and Asti Spumante, which you can find at leading supermarkets and online platforms nationwide.