Consistent, ubiquitous, useful, and inexpensive—the proseccos you can find anywhere. (photo by Jenny Gorman for Wine and Whiskey Globe)

Here at Wine and Whiskey Globe, when we say “cheap,” we mean it in a conversational, not derogatory way. A good way, even. In our view, almost all of us are looking for value (broadly defined), and when “cheap” means both inexpensive and drinkable, that’s a great day.

No bottle in this trio will be found quietly aging in collectors’ wine cellars. But across the country, all of them will be found in shopping carts, often by the case. They are well-marketed and distributed; they are familiar; they are remarkably consistent. They are somewhere around $14, depending on your shop. And, in the glass, they are very similar.

I got to wondering—might there be some meaningful distinctions, even between these mainline offerings? Would one of them emerge as my party go-to?

The answer? Yes and no.

I gathered a small group of regular prosecco drinkers, otherwise known as “my neighbors,” and we set up a semi-blind tasting. One person opened the bottles; another brown-bagged them; yet another numbered them. Everyone knew what wines were on the table, but no one knew which was which.

Here’s what we discovered.


Tasting Notes

A very pale golden yellow in the glass, with steady bubbles. The nose offers a hint of green apple which is confirmed strongly on the first sip. There’s a first impression of sweetness that gives way to a somewhat abrupt, even sour finish.

Highest and Best Use

The layered structure of this wine, especially the metallic note at the end, means it works well mixed with something. The bite adds a pleasant dimension to a good mimosa; it stands up properly in a French 75.


Tasting Notes

Featuring the strongest, smallest bubbles of the three, this wine was unanimously the favorite of the panel. A very mild gold in the glass, it offers just a hint of fruit on the nose and presents a balanced and—oh, let’s face it—overall innocuousness in the mouth. It’s nice.

Highest and Best Use

Splash this one into glasses as your guests arrive, whenever you have guests again. Take it on a picnic, without regret.


Tasting Notes

The Mionetto has a slightly sharp first impression on the palate, a not unpleasant crispness. It stays dry, like a light table wine in an Italian cafe.

Highest and Best Use

This wine would find a happy place in a tub of ice, poolside. You could reach for it all afternoon long; it has some depth. Perfect for prosciutto and cantelope.