I have a few goals for the New Year, and increasing the size of our sparkling wine “collection” is one of them. Sure, other people vow to go to the gym more, to eat healthier food, and I definitely have high hopes for Boston Marathon training and moving more in general, but investing in more sparkling wine is one I know I can keep.
I love bubbly. It’s celebratory, great with food, and depending on what you buy, can be affordable to be a more frequent part of your dining. I happen to prefer sparkling wines made in the Champagne method because of the brioche or biscuit-like quality they can have.
We currently have about 100 bottles of wine in our house. About 90 of them are red. The whites and sparkling wine? Most of them will be coming with us for Christmas or consumed on New Year’s.
And as much as I love a good Cab or Malbec, for whatever reason the past few months have me going for a slightly chilled Verdejo, or even better, Cremant de Bourgogne. I have a really hard time pronouncing Bourgogne though, so I like when I can just point to the menu to order. Does that ever happen to you?
I have decided to go with what makes me happy right now, and that is bubbly
Luckily, thanks to this little blog, I have had the opportunity to taste some delicious (free) samples since my return from Ireland.
First we opened this Lamberti prosecco. While I enjoyed the bubbles and acidity of this prosecco, I have to say that prosecco is probably my least favorite of sparkling wines. There’s something about that pear aftertaste that is often there that I just can’t get behind. However, I do love my bursting-with-bubbles, Secco, which I purchased at The Urban Grape and enjoyed all summer long. Remember summer?
On the other hand, I fell head-over-heels in love with this Crémant de Bourgogne from Maison Vincent. This wine is crisp and bright and also offers that yeasty quality I love.
We also received a bottle of Pol Roger Champagne, which we are saving for New Year’s Eve and something new to me, a bubbly from Argentina, Trapiche Extra Brut. The Trapiche is aged briefly in stainless steel, which maintains the freshness of the wine. A lot of citrus came through in this bubbly, lemon and lemon peel, along with a bit of green apple. Though not made in the traditional method, I enjoyed this wine and its uniqueness.
Earlier in the month I was also able to take part in the TasteLive holiday sparklers event which featured wines we are very familiar with, from Freixenet, Segura Viudas, and Gloria Ferrer. These are the sparkling wines I speak of when I talk about value. The Segura Viudas, for example, retails for around $10 a bottle and is absolutely delightful. I also got a new photo editor, hence the Polaroid shot.
Pairing food with bubbly is a cinch. Anything from takeout pizza to a multi-course gourmet meal are great with it. For our Tuesday night TasteLive tasting with friends, I did a bunch of simple items, cheeses paired with jalapeno and fig jellies, and a Trader Joe’s red pepper dip with pita chips and baguette. Because the tastings are hosted on the West Coast, they start at 9:00 our time. We had already had dinner and just needed something to keep our evening hunger at bay!
This Vermont Harvest jam was incredible atop Neufchatel cheese. I ate it for breakfast the next day with bagel chips.
I look forward to a 2012 full of health and bubbly because they do go hand in hand!
Do you have any fun resolutions for 2012?