The holiday season is here and I bring bubbles to every party. Presenting a bottle of bubbly adds a special touch to the festive season. There is something so indescribably fun in hearing the popping of a cork when opening a sparkling wine. This holiday season consider Crémant d’Alsace for all your celebrations.
So what exactly is Crémant d’Alsace? Well it is an elegant sparkling wine that is produced in the picturesque region of Alsace, where it is nestled in the foothills of the Vosges Mountains in Northeastern France. As its name suggests, Crémant literally means creamy, and the wines of Crémant d’Alsace are fresh, creamy, and elegant.
Here are fives solid reasons to drink Crémant d’Alsace this holiday season.
1. Dependable Quality
First of all, just like Champagne, Crémant d’Alsace is attentively made in the traditional method, where it gets its bubbles during the second fermentation in the bottle. Then it spends a minimum of one year in the cellar before releasing. This aging gives the wine incredible depth and texture.
Crémant d’Alsace gets its elegance from the unique characteristics of the grape varietal it is made from. There are five varietals from which Crémant can be made; Pinot Blanc, Riesling, Pinot Gris, Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. You can find a wide range of styles and textures from blanc de blanc, to blanc de noir, brut, or even rosé.
These special bubbles from Alsace have carved out a reputation as an affordable traditional method bubbly alternative. Crémant d’Alsace is more popular in France than even Champagne and that maybe because of its price to quality ratio. Though the bubbles make it festive and celebratory, the price makes it affordable for everyday drinking.
4. Alternative To Champagne
Crémant d’Alsace is probably the closest thing that comes to Champagne, except don’t call it Champagne. In terms of geography it is the region nearest to Champagne. Crémant d’Alsace is more approachable some Champagnes, these cuvées are sometimes lighter, more fresh and less austere than its Champagne counterpart.
5. Perfect Pairing
Not only is Crémant d’Alsace a great aperitif, but is also pairs impeccably with just about any cuisine and any course from appetizers to desserts. The wines pair perfectly with tuna tartare, foie gras, oysters or shellfish. Also consider Crémant d’Alsace for a wide range of foods like fried chicken, spicy Thai food, flavorful Chinese or even pizza. Due to the high acidity of these wines, they act as a palate cleanser and can be paired over a multi course meal too.
Crémant d’Alsace is not just for the holidays or special occasions. Keep in mind that this elegant bubbly is perfect for all celebration or for no reason in particular. Make sure you have a bottle in your refrigerator at all times. Here are three wines from Alsace that you need to stock up on for the holidays or for year round sipping.
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.
Pierre Sparr Crémant d’Alsace Brut Réserve (SRP $19)
In the heart of Alsace’s finest district, the Haut-Rhin, Maison Pierre Sparr follows a 300-year-old tradition of winemaking that began during the reign of King Louis XIV. Since 1680, the Sparr family’s passion for viticulture and winemaking has passed from one generation to the next.
This very special Brut Réserve is light yellow with a nose that offers aromas of melon and dried mango. The soft mousseux leaves a pleasant feeling on the palate, accompanied by a racy, powerful body and crisp acidity.
Lucien Albrecht Crémant d’Alsace Brut Rosé NV (SRP $22)
Lucien Albrecht is one of the most distinguished and long-standing brands in Alsace. The estate was established in 1425 by Romanus Albrecht and was considered a viticultural pioneer in the region. In the early 70s, Lucien Albrecht, was one of the three founding fathers of the Crémant d’Alsace AOC.
The flavors of this brut rosé display nice strawberry and wild cherry fruit, with a touch of richness on the mid palate. It is balanced with dry, crisp acidity and complemented with a creamy texture and long finish.
Here’s a preview of what each of the French Winophiles will be sharing this month:
Liz Barrett from What’s In That Bottle is writing “Affordalicious Alsace: Best Bubbles for the Buck”
Jill Barth from L’Occasion will show us “A Festival of French Crémant”
Robin Renken from Crushed Grape Chronicles will publish “A Sparkling Rosé by any other name…just might be a Crémant”
Camilla Mann will talk about a tasting pairing, Lingcod, Legumes, and Domaine Mittnacht Frères Crémant d’Alsace on her blog Culinary Adventures with Cam.
Martin Redmond will be “Elevating Weeknight Fare with Cremant d’Alsace” at the Enofylz Wine Blog
Nicole Ruiz Hudson’s post on SommsTable.com will be “Crémants for Going Out and Staying In”
Wendy Klik of A Day in the Life on the Farm is writing “Rustic Elegance; Fall Vegetable Soup paired with Cremant” which sounds perfect for Thanksgiving!
Jane Niemeyer will teach us “How to Pair Crémant d’Alsace and Food” at alwaysravenous.com
Payal Vora’s post at Keep the Peas will be called “Crémant d’Alsace: More Than Just A Sparkling Wine”
Jeff Burrows will be pairing “Elegant Crémant de Bourgogne Served with Lobster Two Ways” at foodwineclick.com
Gwendolyn Alley from winepredator.com is going to be looking at Crémants from a variety of regions in her post this weekend.
David Crowley from cookingchatfood.com will be discussing the Best Food Pairings for Crémant d’Alsace”
Rupal Shankar the Syrah Queen will be giving us “Five Reasons to Drink Crémant d’Alsace this Holiday Season”
Neil will be joining us from Eat, Live, Travel, Write with a post entitled “Champagne taste but not a Champagne budget? An exploration of France’s Crémant wines”
Lauren Walsh from The Swirling Dervish will share “Add a Little Sparkle to Your Holiday with Crémant d’Alsace”
Susannah at avvinare.com is sharing “French Cremant – Perfect Sparklers for the Holiday Season”
Kat Wisnosky our host from Bacchus Travel & Tours will share a double delight: a food post and a travel post while
Wendy Klik says
Very compelling post with great reasons to choose Cremant. My favorite reason is because it is absolutely delicious…..
Martin Redmond says
Wonderful read Rupal. Do you know, what it the relationship between Pierre Sparr and Charles Sparr?
Lauren Walsh says
A great read, one that will make a Cremant lover out of anyone who is unfamiliar with this affordable, high-quality sparkler. Cheers!
Robin Bell Renken says
What a fantastic post! These 5 reasons really get to the point. I find so many people have never even heard of Crémant and this spells out simply and approachably why they should take a moment to search for some!
Nicole Ruiz Hudson says
I don’t ever need a reason to drink bubbly, but happy to have 5 more!
Jill Barth says
I like that you indicate dependable quality, which is such an important thing for many consumers when they open a bottle of bubbly. Despite the price point, affordable, I know that many people still consider bubbly from France a very special treat!