Let’s ring out this New Year with some good cheer — and some good bubbly.
True Champagne comes only from the Champagne region of France, about 85 miles northeast of Paris. There are plenty of other terrific sparkling wines, but by law those makers may not call their product “champagne.” So we’ll just call them delicious.
Joe Printz, the owner of Grape D’Vine in Sparkill and our wine-expert in residence this winter, has recommendations and tasting notes for eight bottles, ranging in price from $15 (your party wine to impress) to $72 (your splurge wine to die for).
Happy New Year!
1. Francois Montand. $15. From a winemaker who grew up in the Champagne region and moved to the Jura during World War II. It’s a Chenin Blanc based sparkler with an apple-butter note.
2. Livio Sassetii Prosecco. $16. This rose prosecco from Chianti is full dried strawberries, citrus and cranberry at its elegant best.
3. Col Vetoraz Prosecco. $17. A very feminine sparkler from the Veneto in Italy, with a creamy texture that finishes with a round and soft baked Bosc pear note.
4. Parigot Crémant de Bourgogne Brut Blanc de Blancs. $25. A Burgundy with bubbles. Lean, chalk and dry. Rich, but it’s not a sweet wine by any stretch.
5. Philippe Prie Brut Tradition Champagne. $32. This little gem of a wine tastes like a bottle-aged vintage Champagne. Lemon curd and brioche are abundant here. It’s a steal.
6. Pierre Moncuit Grand Cru Brut. $43. A grower’s Champagne. Almost briny, lean, like chablis with bubbles. It’s very minerally, and very light, with a little ginger. The vineyard is right next to Krug.
7. Bollinger Special Cuvée. $55. Sipping this reminds me of the first taste of Champagne I had when I was 10 years old. It’s a very grown-up drink. Like white Burgundy with bubbles.
8. Billecart-Salmon Rose Champagne. $72.This pink Champagne is the epitome of the craft of Champagne making. Massive amounts of rose petal, fraise, and citrus peel. Got caviar?