It’s All About the Bubbles

It’s time to break out the bubbly! This is the time everyone dusts off their champagne flutes & coupes and pops open a cork or two to celebrate the season.While sparkling wine should certainly be a staple at any holiday party, I would encourage you to keep the corks popping all year long and discover some amazing pairings that will leave you wondering why you didn’t always have a bottle of bubbly on hand.

One of my favorite things about sparkling wine is how versatile it is with a wide range of foods which makes it the ultimate wine to have on hand for your next gathering.

I love to add a little bit of class to bar food. Everything from wings to chips to charcuterie has a perfect sparkling pairing. I love the way a great glass of bubbles acts like a squeeqee and cleanses the palate in between bites. It’s one of life’s simple pleasures.

Here you will find a few tips and a shopping guide to help take the mystery out of selecting that perfect bottle for your next celebration.

Let’s begin with the dryness scale for sparkling wine.  This will help you make a more educated decision and pick something that’s best suited for your palate.
Extra Brut/Grand Brut/Brut Zero – This label is going to be the driest end of the spectrum.  Typically these bone dry sparklings are best paired with food because of the bright acidity.  The following go in order from the next driest to the very sweetest:
  • Brut
  • Extra Dry
  • Dry
  • Sec
  • Demi-Sec
  • Doux
If you are new to sparkling wines, go for an extra dry. If you like your wine a little sweeter, go with a Demi-Sec. For a
great Demi-Sec pairing, grab a baguette, slice it about 1/4 inch thick, add gorgonzola, prosciutto and fig spread and voila you have an instant crowd pleaser!
Here are some great bubbles for every price point. Cheers!
Inexpensive: (Under $20)
  • Deligeroy Cremant de Loire Brut, Loire Valley, France – $12 
  • Montelliana Prosecco, DOC, Veneto, Italy – $12
  • Gruet Demi-Sec, Albuquerque, New Mexico – $16
  • Allimant Laugner Cremant d’Alsace Rose, Alsace, France – $18
  • Rosa Regale Brachetto d’Acqui, Piedmont, Italy – $20 (Perfect w/chocolate) 
  • Segura Viudas Cava, Brut Reserva Heredad, Spain – $20
  • Thibaut-Jannison, Blanc de Chardonnay, Charlottesville, Virginia – $20
Mid-Price: ($21-$40)
  • Trump Blanc de Blanc, Monticello, Virginia – $25 
  • J Brut Rose, Sonoma, California – $32
  • Schramsberg Blanc de Blancs, Napa, California – $38
  • Perrier Jouet, Grand Brut, Champagne, France  – $38
Premium: ($41-$60)
  • Nicolas Feuillatte Brut, Champagne, France 
  • Schramsberg Brut Rose, Napa, California – $42
  • Moet & Chandon Rose Imperial $48 
  • Bollinger Brut, Special Cuvee, Champagne, France – $60 
Veuve RoseSplurge ($60-100)
  • 2004 Laurent-Perrier Brut Millésimé Champagne, France – $60 
  • Veuve Clicquot “Ponsardin” Brut Rose $65
  • Pommery Brut, NV, Champagne, France – $70
Grand DameWhen you’re looking for the something over the top! ($100 & Over)
  • 1998, Veuve Cliquot, Le Grand Dame -$130
  • Dom Perignon, NV, Champagne, France – $135
  • 2005, Roederer Cristal, Champagne, France – $200