French Ticklers!

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  • By Samantha Dugan
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French Ticklers!

It may be a surprise to some that sparkling wines are produced all over France, not just in Champagne. Representing comparable value, they can help get your bubble on without punishing your bank account.

“What about a Saturday afternoon devoted to sparkling wines, all from France?” Randy asked.

 

“Well, you know I’m in,” I confirmed.  On the books it went and we spent a lovely Saturday afternoon, with seventy-five of our bubble-loving customers, sampling through some wickedly cool, fresh and downright reasonably priced sparklers from France. Check out the highlights below!

 

N.V. Le Capitaine Vouvray Brut

I have had the sublime pleasure of visiting this tiny family run domaine in the Loire Valley’s region of Vouvray, a couple of times over the years and the quality of the wines are just as delightful has the two brothers that own and operate it. Alain, the winemaker, has a thick sturdy frame, a sun weathered face scrunched beneath his fisherman’s beanie, his smirk just as intriguing as the wines he produces. This value driven sparkling Vouvray, (as always made from Chenin Blanc) has aromas of under ripe pear, fresh cut grass, faintly of white button mushrooms with a scrape of citrus rind. On the palate you find delicate little bubbles, dried apricots, minerals that remind me slightly of a damp apple cellar. Dry, interesting as all get out and under $20.00! Love that.

$16.99 per bottle

 

N.V. Bailly-Lapierre Cremant de Bourgogne Pinot Noir Brut

Bailly-Lapierre has in short time become one of our best selling and most beloved little value sparklers. The Brut and Brut Rose consistently fly off the racks and people always come back for more, so we super excited to offer this spectacular sparkler made from 100% Pinot Noir. Dense red fruits on the nose with bits of buttered toast and spice. Very pretty little bead of bubbles with a full mouth fell and a bright, cleans and refreshing finish. Outside of cake or something sweet, can’t think of much this wouldn’t go with.

$16.99 per bottle

 

N.V. Prosper Maufoux Cremant De Bourgogne

An amazingly easy to adore sparkling wine from Burgundy is always a welcome treat right? This dry but fruit driven wine is packed with nectarine, lemon cream, toasted rolls and flecks of golden raisin. Very tiny bubbles with a richer bready finish. One of our favorite brunch bubblies.

$16.99 per bottle

 

N.V. Marcel Martin La Garde Tete De Cuvee Cremant De Loire

The top Cuvee from Loire Valley Marcel Martin, this is a rather unusual blend of Chenin Blanc, Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnay. Fairly rich on the nose, citrus soaked dried fruits, toasted doughy bread and fresh cream. Pretty mouth filling with a finish that is quite long and a touch yeasted. Pretty powerful wine from this region and for half what you would pay for most true Champagnes.

$25.99 per bottle

 

N.V. Xavier Reverchon Cremant Du Jura Brut Rosé

I had to beg the importer to please, please bring in some of this pretty little sparkler. We were at the domaine in Jura and the second I smelled this lovely wine I knew our customers needed to have some! No easy feat as there are only 100 cases made, but with enough begging we were able to convince the winemaker to let go of a few and now, well here they are! Very delicate pink color. The nose is all berries and spice with just a scrape of citrus rind. Light and super-friendly on the palate with just a touch of bitter almond on the finish, which keeps you reaching for one more sip. An absolute pleasure and honor to stock this super rare wine. Oh, and it’s organic too!

$26.99 per bottle

 

N.V. Xavier Reverchon Cremant Du Jura Brut

Xavier has been farming his vineyards organically for nearly 30 years now. Not because it was cool but because he simply didn’t like the energy in his wines when he saturated the soils with Roundup. Healthy soils produce happy fruit and this rare little sparkler is nothing if not happy. Made from mostly Chardonnay with some Pinot Noir and a splash of the local variety, Savagnin. Bursting with cream-soaked pastry dough, rendered peaches, fresh green herbs and fragrant white flowers all with a delicate mouth feel, lacy bubbles and a clean finish. This wine begs for a second sip. A second glass. A second bottle. Very rare. 

$26.99 per bottle

 

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