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'STORM IN A WINE GLASS' Bar boss: Sparkling wine is clearly labelled.

Byline: MIKE LOCKLEY Staff Reporter

THE boss of bar in Birmingham's showpiece Grand Central complex has labelled a row over the sale of Italian sparkling wine Prosecco a "storm in a wine glass".

Italian producers of trendy Prosecco are demanding that the fizzy wine is only sold in bottles, despite it proving popular on tap at the showpiece shopping centre.

But Daniel Spinath, director of bar chain Frizzenti which opened in Birmingham's flagship new centre last week, said the wine sold in his establishments was clearly branded with the label Vino Frizzante and not labelled as Prosecco.

He claimed the company was fully supportive of European rules that dictate how the wine can be sold.

Pressure from Itay's Prosecco producers has led to regulations being introduced that the drink could only be sold in a bottle.

And local authorities in the UK have clamped down on bars that advertise the drink being for sale on draught.

Mr Spinath said: "We clearly spell out exactly how the product can be labelled. Unfortunately, what we tell people and what people do are not the same thing.

"Producers want to be able to control the quality and origin of the wine so they don't want it sold in anything but a glass bottle.

"The Italians are a victim of their own success and have created this problem for themselves.

"Prosecco has become the generic word for sparkling wine."

"We support the Italians - it's all a storm in a wine glass."

Winemakers have stated that the sale of Prosecco on tap is illegal under 2009 European Union rules which set strict guidelines about how it may be sold, similar to rules that dictate what kind of wine may be called Champagne. Prosecco is less expensive than its sparkling French rival and has become increasingly popular in UK bars and pubs.

Mr Spinath is also introducing a range of still wines on tap into the Birmingham bar to sell alongside the sparkling variety.

He added: "There is a difference between the quality of sparkling wines on the market and producers have put these regulations in place to protect their product."

The wine on tap in Frizzenti

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Publication:Sunday Mercury (Birmingham, England)
Date:Oct 18, 2015
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