November is always a special time for tasting new wines at the Import Vintners and Spirits Association (IVSA). It’s just one month away from the Christmas and New Years holidays. And that means lots of sparkling wines to taste. So with this in mind, I spent almost all my time at the IVSA tasting bubbles. And my picks are here for you. Bubbles are great all year round, BTW, so buy some for the holidays, and for whenever you want to treat yourself, family, and friends!
Champagne de Venoge Cordon Bleu Brut Select NV, France ($62.99). This Champagne is a blend of 2/3 Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier (both red grapes), and 1/3 Chardonnay. Light lemon in colour. Nice medium toasty nose. Medium acidity and body. Citrus, some spice and toasty flavours on the palate.
- Pierre Paillard Brut Grand Cru N/V, France ($56.99). This Champagne is a blend of 60% Pinot Noir and 40% of Chardonnay. It had a toasty nose. Light body with light lemon, peaches, and some floweriness. Dry mouthfeel with a medium length. Very nice.
- Perrier Jouet Grand Brut N/V, France. This is also a blend of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. Pale lemon in colour. Light lees and toast on the nose. Light body with apples and white fruit. Small bubbles with lower acidity. I really enjoyed this one in part due to the lower acidity which made this Champagne very easy to drink on its own.
- Champagne Gardet & CIE Brut Tradition, France ($49.95). This Champagne is a blend of Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier, and Chardonnay. Light lees and apple aromas in the glass. High acidity with small aggressive bubbles. Toastiness and apples on the palate with a dry citrus finish.
- G.H. Mumm Cordon Rouge N/V, France. A nice nose with citrus and toastiness. Dry on the palate with a sweet undercurrent. Citrus with slight oak and toast. Elegant.
Cava and Prosecco
In case you didn’t know Prosecco is an indigenous grape to the Venuto region of Italy, as well as the name of the sparkling wine that is made from this grape.
Trevisiol, Prosecco Extra Dry N/V, Italy ($29.99). Light lemony colour. Very light stone fruit nose. Medium body, with a creamy mousse. Apples, lime and lemon flavours. A bit of roundness on the palate. Very nice.
- Bastianich Flor Prosecco, Italy ($19.99). A delightful wine with melon and lychee aromas. Off-dry, light-body, with cinnamon, citrus and peach flavours. Small bubble. This is such a fun wine. Start a party with this wine.
- Rosa di Sera Rosato Extra-Dry NV, Italy ($21.99). This is a rose Prosecco, made with 85% Prosecco and 15% Marzemino grapes. Light cherry colour with a bright cherry nose. More cherries on the palate along with marzipan.
- Villa Sandi Prosecco Superiore Extra Dry DOCG, Italy ($22.95). Light roses and citrus aromas. Off-dry with apples, orange and citrus flavours. Medium bubble. Easy to drink.
Old and New World Bubbles
Cabriz Espumante Bruto, Dao, Portugal ($17.99). Yes, Portugal produces sparkling wine. But we rarely see it. This wine is made with native grapes to Portugal. Light citrus aromas, lead to green apples and light oak on the palate. Dry with medium body. High acidity. A treat to try.
- Lucien Albrecht Cremant d’Alsace Brut Rose, France ($24.99). This Cremant is produced from the Pinot Noir grape. Watery pink colour. Light strawberry aroma. High in acid with small bubbles. Dry with apple, cherry and strawberry flavours to tickle your tongue. Elegant. Easy to enjoy.
- Monmousseau Cuvee JM Brut 2007, France ($19.99). This sparkler is made from 100% Chenin Blanc grapes. Light lemon in colour. Light citrus with a hint of honey aromas. Cinnamon greets your lips upfront on the palate, followed with citrus and apple flavours. Medium acid and length. Very tasty.
- Oyster Bay Sparkling Cuvee Brut N/V, New Zealand ($24.99). I was really surprised by this wine. It won me over with its fresh fruit flavours. Light citrus and stone fruit on the nose. Lots of flavour in your mouth with citrus, lime, kiwi fruit, and herbal flavours. A small bubble with medium acidity.
- Dr. L Sparkling Riesling, Germany ($18.99). Dr. Loosen is a master of the Riesling grape in Germany as well as other regions of the world, such as Washington State, where he works with Chateau Ste. Michelle. Medium lemon with a green tint in the glass. Citrus, minty, petrol aromas. An interesting nose! Light body, off-dry, with green apples, mint and petrol. Medium-plus acidity keeps it refreshing. A different, fun sparkling wine.
- Jacob’s Creek Sparkling Chardonnay Pinot Noir N/V, Australia ($13.99). Light citrus nose. Dry with high acidity and green apple flavour on the palate. Small bubble. Medium length. This is an easy sipper.
I hope you found a few sparkling wines that you would like to try for the holidays. During this tasting I also tried a few fortified wines, so my next blog for the IVSA will be on ports and stickies.
Contact me if you would like me to run a private tasting in your home or for your office. Enjoy!