I just celebrated another birthday and made sure there were multiple opportunities to share some bubbly with friends and family. The first bottle was 2007 Rouge de Noirs, a sparkling Pinot Noir by Schug, a well known Sonoma winery. The wine is a beautiful deep rose color and raspberries are the dominant flavor. It is wonderfully crisp and dry on the palate with loads of bubbles. This bottle is priced at about $30.
Several days later, a friend and I enjoyed a bottle of Mailly Grand Cru Brut Réserve from France. This wine is a blend of 75% Pinot Noir and 25% Chardonnay. It is light gold in color with fine bubble structure, dry with a hint of toast. This bubbly is a perfect apéritif wine and would also pair beautifully with creamy chicken dishes, cheeses, and fruit desserts. Total Wine carries this label. Expect to pay $40 or so.
The last of the three Champagnes was Pehu-Simonet Selection Brut and it was enjoyed with my brother, Douglas, and his wife, Theresa. It was sublime. Pehu-Simonet is a grower producer Champagne. The “Selection” Brut is 70% Pinot Noir and 30% Chardonnay. Grown on north facing slopes, the cool weather produces grapes that show more earthiness than fruit. We loved this wine with its fine bubbles and lasting, minerally finish. Prices range from $42-$60 depending on where you are shopping.