We know many of you will be looking for a good bottle of bubbly for the upcoming Valentine's Day events (or did you forget?). While Champagne is the highest expression of sparkling wine in the world, it also carries a deservedly higher price tag. Those looking for great 'bang for the buck' bubbly are best served exploring some of the lesser known sparkling wine areas to find quality gems, even venture into some more experimental wines. Nicole Chanrion is a well regarded Beaujolais producer from the Kermit Lynch portfolio (whose Beaujolais represent the most important names in the region), and their Cote de Brouilly (@10 acres of 50+ year old Gamay)is on the very short list of best wines made in the appellation. The fruit that doesn't go into that benchmark wine goes here, a provocative 'Blanc de Noir' made in the Champagne method that really doesn't have a peer group with which to compare. There is no 'Cremant de Beaujolais' appellation the way there is a Cremant d'Alsace or Cremant de Jura to cover the sparkling wine industry in those regions. There really isn't anyone else on the market doing this type of wine, certainly not from Cru designated vineyards. So this wine stands alone, on its own merits, and is delicious.
Clear and golden in the glass with the slightest hints of copper, this pours with a soft pillowy mousse that drops out fairly quickly and a crisp biscuity nose with lots of crisp white fruit and citrus. The gamay character comes through on the palate, showing the light high-toned red fruit and hints of savory of a proper Cru Beaujolais. Interestingly, the exceptionally low dosage makes perfect sense here as the grape's naturally soft texture and lower acidity greatly benefit from the extra cut in the finish to bring out all the tart apple tones. This is a great mass appeal sparkling wine for those who want a dry sparkler but don't have the palate or pocketbook for the more assertive 'true' Champagnes or Champagne emulators.
The Best of the Best.
We offering free tastings on these wines in the store every Thursday and Friday, and a 10% discount off the retail price through the duration of the day. Come on by and give them a try!