First off, let me say that I know very little about Champagne. Except that 1) it's yummy. And 2) the French, and certain wine lovers with their noses in the air (a.k.a the French) get all bent out of shape every time you refer to any sparkling wine as a champagne. Apparently Champagne is a term only to be used for sparkling wines grown in the tiny Champagne region in France. Hey, don't look at me -- it's legal stuff that's outlined in the 1891 Treaty of Madrid!
Anyhow, the other day my wife and I celebrated our Anniversary with a bottle of
sparkling wine from Shramsberg Vineyards (Calistoga, CA). It's a 2005 Brut; which means that it's not a sweet wine and contains less than 15 grams of sugar per liter. In addition, it's a Blanc de Blancs. For you non-frenchies out there, that means literally, "white of whites," and the term is used only for
sparkling wines made with only Chardonnay grapes.
Ok, lesson done. Now for the drinking!
I'm not used to tasting
sparkling wines, so it's hard to describe. The bubbles were very fine, and it had a nice finish that lingered on the tongue. I definitely got some fruit flavors out of it, apple and peach come to mind. The flavors were delicately balanced with a mild acidity that gave this bottle a crisp feel to it.
I'd drink this champagne by itself, or with a mild meal. Fish, crab, and maybe chicken. I do think that with a spicy meal that this beverage would be overwhelmed.
Heck, I'm not going to worry about calling it champagne. This Sparkling Wine from California's Napa region could easily go up against the best stuff that France could create. The name doesn't matter -- it's what's in the bottle that counts.Rating:
4.5/5. Buy it today, tomorrow, and every day for the next two weeks. It is that good, and you'll enjoy it every time.Price:
$$$$ (about $30 - $35)Sparkling Wine Info:
2005 Blanc de Blanc; Brut
1400 Schramsberg Road
Calistoga, CA 94515
THANK YOU to Wikipedia. For more information on Champagne, please visit this link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Champagne_(wine)
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