There is nothing more festive than the pop of a cork on a bottle of bubbly. I love to drink sparkling wines all year-long, but there is something extra special about drinking sparkling wine over the holiday season. When it comes to toasting a happy and healthy New Year, bubbles are a must!
With New Year’s Eve just around the corner, many of us will be looking for the best bubbly to ring in 2019. There is a spectrum of sparkling wines to toast the New Years, we are talking Champagne, Franciacorta, Prosecco, Crémant, Sekt, Cava and sparkling wines from the New World. While sparkling wines are great to ring in the New Year, keep in mind these wines have great acidity, making them a wonderful choice as an aperitif, a celebratory toast, or paired with food.
As the New Year approaches, it is a time of reflection. When I look back at the past year, I have had some of the best bubbly around, so this is not just random samples or suggestions. This list was a year in the making. These are some of my favorite Champagnes and sparkling wines that I have had the opportunity to drink and discover around the globe. So take the ease off of what to buy this holiday and take my suggestions and grab a few bottles of these effervescent bubbles. You are sure to bring in the New Year with style.
Champagne Laurent-Perrier Cuvée Rosé (SRP $79.00)
The Cuvée Rosé from Laurent-Perrier is the most recognized rosé Champagne in the world. Held in an elegant bottle inspired by King Henri IV, it has been widely acknowledged for its consistent high quality for more that 40 years.
This Champagne is made with 100% Pinot Noir from 10 different “crus”. It has intense fruit flavors and is clean and slightly sharp. The wine opens to the sensation of freshly picked red berries. The finish is supple and rounded.
Champagne Besserat de Bellefon Brut Blanc de Blanc (SRP $69.99)
Edmond Besserat founded Besserat Champagne in 1843. After Edmond, his grandsons continued to build the reputation of the house. In 1927, Edmond Besserat, a grandson of the founder, married Yvonne de Meric de Bellefon, who came from another prestigious Champagne family, and the house of Besserat de Bellefon Champagne was born.
The color is a supremely pure, bright yellow. The froth is composed of light bubbles which leave a moderate ring. The nose is intense, with fresh citrus notes blending harmoniously with floral notes and toasted aromas. There is a structured and ample mouthfeel.
Piper Heidsieck Cuvée Brut NV (SRP $39.99)
The Brut NV represents the epitome of the Piper-Heidsieck style: a classic, well-structured, and fruit forward champagne.
This Champagne teases and allures us with its festive, light-drenched, pale gold shimmer and a joyful display of neat, lively bubbles. Notes of almond and fresh hazelnut accompany the precise ascent of its bubbles. It is lively, subtle and light, marked by the pureness of fresh pear and apple.
Ferrari Brut Trento (SRP $24.99)
Ferrari is one of Italy’s most famous sparkling wine producers. Founder Giuliano Ferrari’s vision was to create something akin to Champagne, using Chardonnay grapes and the Traditional Method.
100% Chardonnay it is straw yellow with slight green reflections in color. On the nose, fresh and lasting, with significant overtones of ripe golden apples and wild flowers. Clean and balanced in taste, with a slight hint of bread-crust.
Villa Franciacorta Mon Saten Brut 2014 (SRP $24.99)
Made of culture and tradition Villa wines are an expression of a terroir. Villa Franciacorta, a small medieval hamlet dating back to the fifteenth century, is located in Monticelli Brusati just short distance from Lake Iseo.
Planted in the vineyards best terroir. The Saten produced at Casa Villa is instantly recognizable. Velvety bubbles that release a sensual bouquet and softly caress the palate before slipping away like silk. The sensations are ecstatically pleasurable and the persistence is enchanting.
Zuccardi Blanc de Blancs (SRP $34.99)
Zuccardi makes one of the best sparkling wines in Argentina. The Blanc de Blanc is the great project of Sebastián Zuccardi, who decided to make sparkling wine in Mendoza after having worked in Champagne. Produced through the traditional method with 100% Chardonnay grapes from high altitude vineyards.
Fitz Ritter Riesling Extra Trocken Sekt NV (SRP $20)
The Fitz Ritter Estate founded in 1785 is now in its eighth generation of ownership. Dedicate to producing only natural wines of the highest quality. Sekt means sparkling wine in German.
This wine is an extra dry sparkling wine made with Riesling grapes. This Sekt is crisp and dry, bursting with the fruitiness of ripe Riesling. Notes of brioche, paired with honey and floral expressions. Well balanced and harmonious.
Maison Kuentz-Bas Crémant d’Alsace Brut (SRP $18)
Maison Kuentz-Bas was first established by the Kuentz family in 1795, and
the domaine as we know it today was forged through a marriage that joined the Kuentz and Bas families in 1895. Nestled in the town of Husseren-les-Châteaux, it sits at one of the highest points in Alsace, and the vineyards stretch out from the village over an area of ten hectares.
The palate on this Crémant is slightly creamy with tastes of orange, lemon, and tart green apple skin. A wonderful crispness and freshness lingers on the palate.
Le Colture Fager Prosecco DOCG (SRP $16.99)
Santo Stefano di Valdobbiadene is a small village set in the vine-chequered mosaic of the Prosecco hills. Le Colture has grown wines here since the 1500s, under the guidance of the same family.
Without any doubt, this is the most modern Valdobbiadene DOCG version, the wine that is a true international hit. Its most attractive qualities are enfolded in delicate scents of crisp citrus and fresh vegetables, often complemented by lovely notes of fresh-baked bread followed by a vibrant palate.
Gramona III Lustros 2007 Gran Reserva Cava (SRP $52.99)
Gramona’s history is long and storied, as far back as 1816 a member of the family has been making wine in Penedes. Today, the house is one of the few remaining family owned estates in the region. At Gramona, time is never an issue. The wines receive perhaps the longest average ageing than any other cava.
III Lustros is a blend of the most age worthy white varieties on the property, Xarel.lo and Macabeo found in the vineyard of La Plana. It originates from some of the oldest vines farmed by Xavier and Jaume on chalky limestone soils.
J. Schram 2009 (SRP $120)
From the inception of Schramsberg’s efforts in 1965, the winery has sought to achieve the greatest elegance and individuality possible in our sparkling wines. J. Schram epitomizes Schramsberg’s philosophy to create a wine in which no effort has been spared and no care has been omitted.
J. Schram is aged for over eight years on the yeast in Schramsberg’s and each bottle is then riddled by hand. The 2009 J. Schram opens with aromas of pear, pineapple and apricot, and almond. The elegant palate features fruitful elements of apple and melon. The persistent finish is driven by generous and bright acidity.
Louis Picamelot Crémant de Bourgogne Les Reipes Blanc de Blancs (SRP $27.99)
Louis Picamelot was one of the first Rully’s inhabitants to launch the production of Burgundian Sparkling Wine.
The colour is a vibrant pale green straw. The palate reveals a lovely fruit-driven sparkling wine, with lightness and freshness. Best consumed while young and fresh.