There is nothing more festive than the pop of a cork on a bottle of bubbly. I drink sparkling wine year-round, but there is something about the effervescence of bubbles that makes the holiday season more festive and fun. 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 2022. There is a spectrum of wines to toast the New Year, 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 sparklers from around the world, so this is not just random samples or suggestions. This list was a year in the making. These are some of my favorite sparkling wines that I have had the opportunity to drink and (re)discover. So take the ease off of what to buy this holiday season and grab a few bottles of these effervescent bubbles. You are sure to bring in the New Year with style.
Côté Mas Crémant De Limoux Brut Rosé (SRP $18)
A lovely pink with delicate and persistent bubbles. Refined scents of honeysuckle, peach and apricot lead way to a soft mouthfeel of grapefruit and a hint of blood orange. This Crémant De Limoux is an excellent aperitif that pairs well with all styles of cuisine.
Ferrari Trentodoc Sparkling Rosé Brut (SRP $38)
Ferrari Brut Rose is salmon pink in color. The bouquet is distinct and very refined, with the fresh fragrance of Hawthorne flowers, red currants and wild strawberries. The taste is dry, clean and elegant, with a delicate finish of sweet almonds. Perfect served as an aperitif or with lighter dishes, especially seafood.
Lanson Le Black Label Brut Champagne (SRP $60)
Bruno Paillard Première Cuvée Extra Brut Champagne (SRP $50)
Frank Family Vineyards Brut Rosé Napa Valley 2016 (SRP $55)
Frank Family sparkling wines are sourced from vineyards in Carneros, undergoing a special process that takes about five years from vineyard to consumer. An elegantly poised, coral pink wine with tantalizing aromas of toast, raspberry, and sliced green apple. Beautifully textured with fine beads, the palate offers touches of red berries laced with citrus fruit and a refreshing minerality that lingers.
Barone Pizzini Saten Brut Franciacorta Edizione 2014 (SRP $50)
Leclerc Briant Champagne Brut Reserve (SRP $65)
This delicious Champagne delivers the depth and fruitiness expected of a Champagne made from 80% black grapes, with underlying flavors of brioche and almond. The 20% Chardonnay brings an underpinning of lemony acidity, giving an impression of lightness and freshness. It pairs wonderfully with sautéed filet of fish or slow-cooked pork. The perfect addition for a celebration, dinner party or gathering!
Hillinger Secco Pinot Noir Rosé Austria (SRP $20)
Leo Hillinger created Secco after an employee discovered she was battling breast cancer, and even today – more than 10 years later – a portion of the proceeds of his Secco sales go to breast cancer research. It’s 100% Pinot Noir given a short soak on the skins for a pretty pink color. The grapes are picked early – so there’s plenty of acidity – and then fermented to just one notch short of bone dry – to balance that acidity with oodles of ripe, juicy, fruit.
Piper-Heidsieck Champagne Brut Rosé Sauvage (SRP $65)
Rosé Sauvagé means “Wild Rose” in French. This is not your typical Champagne rosé. A high proportion of Pinot Noir results in a bold, deep-hued rosé and a palate that is structured, full-bodied, and yet distinctly elegant. This unique, fruity Champagne, carefully crafted from over 100 crus, is guaranteed to delight all the senses.
Domaine Bousquet Charmat Brut (SRP $13)
This sparkling wine comes from vineyards in Tupungato, Alto Gualtallary. By the foothills of the Andes at 4000 feet altitude. The vineyards enjoy a marked thermal amplitude. It is greenish-yellow in color with delicate bubbles. On the nose, there are lime and apple aromas. On the palate, it is fresh and fruity with crisp natural acidity.
Jansz Tasmania Premium Rosé Sparkling Wine (SRP $28)
The Jansz Rosé is sourced from selected vineyard sites across Tasmania representing the best of the region. The cool climate allows for an elegant wine with powerful fruit flavors and high natural acidity. The wine is predominantly Pinot Noir and shows delicious flavors of strawberries and cream and rose petals. This is the wine you want to start your evening off with!
Bottega Gold Brut Prosecco DOC (SRP $35)
Bottega Gold is a Prosecco DOC, obtained by the vinification of Glera grapes, grown on the Treviso hills. Thanks to its unmistakable golden bottle it has been defined as the “Glamour Sparkling”. Bright, straw yellow, fine and persistent perlage. Bouquet is typical and refined with fruity (green apples, pear, citrus fruits) and floral (white flowers, acacia, wisteria and lily of the valley) notes, sage and spices in the finish. Soft, harmonious and elegant, with a slim body and with lively yet balanced acidity.
Vilarnau Brut Reserva Cava (SRP $15)
Macabeo, Parellada and Chardonnay grapes are picked and vinified before blending and bottling for the second fermentation. The bottles are then aged for over 24 months in temperature-controlled cellars before disgorgement. Pale yellow in color with green lights and a fine mousse. Pronounced apple and pear fruit aromas are followed by toasty bread notes on the long, well-balanced, extra dry palate.
Cuvaison Brut Cuvée Methode Champenoise Napa Valley 2018 (SRP$50)
Made in the classic Méthode Champenoise style, the 2018 Brut Cuvée is an opulent blend of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. The wine is crisp and youthful with notes of pear, yuzu, and lemon peel complemented by the nuttiness of shaved almond and savory brioche. On the palate, the wine is bright and refreshing, and ﬁnishes with a distinct richness derived from its extended 30-month tirage.
Von Winning Riesling Extra Brut Sekt (SRP $28)
White fruit flavors, crisp, crunchy fleshy fruit aromas, fully ripe. With air the wine gains complexity, leaning towards nectarine and crisp cox-orange apple with a nice dose of salinity in the long finish.
Valdo Cuvée 1926 Valdobbiadene Prosseco DOCG Superiore (SRP $25)
Straw yellow in color with golden hues, this wine offers typical aromas of ripe fruits (apple, pear, peach, banana, pineapple). On the palate, it is well-balanced, soft and round with fresh and persistent flavor. An excellent aperitif wine, ideal for all occasions. Also great with first courses like risotto or at the end of the meal with fruits, such as peach and Prosecco.
Unánime Traditional Method Brut Argentina (SRP $20)
Pop open Unánime 2020 sparkling to enhance the already joyful mood of your holiday party. This creamy sparkling wine boasts intense aromas of buttercream and honey, with an unctuous and elegant finish. This Chardonnay and Malbec sparkler is best served with light bites — try it with cranberry and brie bites pre-dinner or strawberry cheesecake bites for dessert.