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Dear Dr. Vinny,

We’re wondering if “crémant” can only be applied to sparkling wines that are produced in France. Since Champagne has this strict restriction, I’m curious if a similar restriction applies to crémant.

—Fabian, Berlin

Dear Fabian,

For those not familiar, the term “crémant” (pronounced “cray-mawn”) is used to indicate a less-bubbly style of sparkling wine from the Champagne region—still carbonated, but more of a gentle fizz. For wines outside of the region, the term is typically used to describe sparkling wines made by the traditional Champagne method, or “méthode Champenoise,” outside of Champagne.

Is the term regulated? No. The term “Champagne” has always historically (and sometimes legally) referred only to wines made in the Champagne region of France, based on geography. Crémant is not a place, so it’s not regulated in the same way.

—Dr. Vinny

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