Holidays call for celebration, and celebrations call for champagne, sparklies, and bubbly. Whether you’re toasting to the past, a person, the future, or just fun times, I’ve got four great choices for expressing the sentiment.
If you’re looking for a top-choice French champagne that won’t break the bank, Gerard Bertrand Crémant de Limoux 2007 is your ticket. This beautiful bubbly is golden with green lights; the taste is crisp, lively, and elegant. Its nose is rich with aromas of a delicate blend of white flowers and pear. As you taste, the wine develops hints of hazelnut, slowly revealing subtle toasted flavors, making a lively attack on the palate; you’ll linger with long lasting bubbles. Crémant de Limoux is a rich, balanced wine, ideal as an aperitif. I’d serve this with salads, fish, and poultry. You can buy this wine at CataVinos Wine Shoppe in Tucson for less than $15 per bottle.
Jaume Serra Cristalino CAVA is a fine Spanish sparkling wine made using the traditional method in which secondary fermentation producing a sparkling wine’s bubbles occurs in the bottle. Its fresh, toasty nose, beautiful citrus, green apple and mineral flavors, supple, lively mouth-feel, and clean, crisp finish make this the ultimate celebratory wine. Enjoy it on its own and with sushi, seafood, fried foods, and Asian dishes. Cristalino is a blend of 50% Macabeo, 35% Parellada, and 15% Xarel-lo – grapes from the Vineyard Can Suriyol (Alt Penedés), El Padruel, Spain. Suggested retail price is $10.00 per bottle.
Mumm Napa Brut Prestige is a complex collection of primarily Pinot Noir (51%) and Chardonnay (46%), with the balance from Pinot Meunier and Pinot Gris grapes. This California Brut opens with gorgeous layered white blossom aromas, followed by creamy vanilla, citrus, stone fruit, and melon notes. With elegant acidity and crisp structure, this medium-bodied sparkling wine displays a rich, lingering finish. Crispness and ample fruit character make this one a superb food wine. The $20 per bottle price makes this a top-shelf choice – maybe a gift for that very special friend?
The Woodbridge by Robert Mondavi Brut is 100% Chardonnay. It’s crisp and refreshing, a good choice for mimosas. This Brut California sparkling wine displays green apple, ripe pear, and bright citrus notes with a toasty finish. Robert Mondavi believed that great wine was not just for special occasions, but to celebrate the joy of every day. Priced at less than $10 per bottle, that is indeed possible.
Speaking of mimosas, consider using cranberry or some other juice in place of the traditional orange juice for a refreshing new toast. Salud!