As an avid Champagne drinker, I have discovered that a half bottle is often the perfect treat for a casual brunch, to start a meal, the right amount for an afternoon delight, or an evening nightcap. Here are some of the many that I love.
Lanson Black Label Brut
In 1798, the Maltese Cross became a trademark of the house as Nicolas Delamotte was a
Knight of the Order of Malta. Forty years later, Jean-Baptiste Lanson took over the estate upon Delamotte’s death. Queen Victoria awarded Lanson the Royal Warrant as the official supplier to the Court of England and Lanson has been ever since. Persistent bubbles, fresh aromas of candied cherry, fresh spring air, toasted bread. Creamy, mineral, brioche and smoky palate.
Veuve Clicquot Yellow Label Brut
Everyone knows this label. It’s an easy “go to” wine with great sensibilities. Predominantly Pinot Noir, with Pinot Meunière and Chardonnay for richness. Balanced, frothy, structured with firm minerality, white peach, honey and candied zest. Bright acidity and an almond finish.
Taittinger Brut La Francaise
Although all three Champagne grapes are used at Taittinger, they are unique in their predominantly Chardonnay blend for non-vintage. The wine also rest for 4 years on the lees; more than double the legal limit of 15 months. The wine shows maturity upon release with a pale gold color, fine bubbles and intense aromas of peach, jasmine and vanilla. The palate seduces with creamy almond paste, honey and smoke and a nervy acidic finish.
Chartogne-Taillet Sainte Anne
The Chartogne family produce small amounts of super high quality wine. They are fanatic about their soils, terroir and use of dosage and oak. The wines are racy and dry. Powerful bubbles, creamy mousse. There are unique smells of mineral, ginger, sea air, and croissant. The palate is energetic, bone dry, with chalk, orchard fruit, tarragon and vibrant acidity. The finish lingers with herb tea and richness.
Duval-Leroy Brut Rosé
This wine wins so many awards and competitions and continually rates high scores with good reasons. Light copper blush color with bold dancing bubbles. The nose is fresh and forward with ripe raspberry, toast with jam and pink roses. The palate is racy, creamy and full with mineral and soft fruit and finishes with a gentle apple note.
Nicolas Feuillatte Brut Grand Reserve
AKA Nicky F, a blend of equal parts Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier and then 20% Chardonnay for added richness and elegance. Soft yellow color with a zillion bubbles. The aromas are floral, jasmine, rose, with hazelnut and dried fruit. The palate is creamy with honey flavors and pear, apple and almond. This is a smooth wine with a pleasant finish.
Moët & Chandon Imperial
This wine replaced White Star as the iconic Champagne of Moët. It is straw color and is fruit forward with aromas of peach, green apple and orange peel. The palate dances with acidity balanced with tropical fruit, lime, tangerine and a creamy vanilla finish.