Tag Archives: cava

Top Thanksgiving Wines, Part I

November is our favorite time of the year at Bottles, which is why our team spends a good bit of the year thinking about you, your Thanksgiving dinner, and the bottles that will make your dinner sing. Out of the thousands of wines we taste each year, our nine November selections must meet the following criteria:

a) they must taste good
b) they must be agile enough to complement the Thanksgiving dinner as enjoyed on the whole
c) they must represent a good value
d) they must taste good.

Did we mention they must taste good?

Here are the sparkling and white wines that we’ll be drinking this November 23. Stay tuned next week for our rosé and red wine choices.

Terre di Marca Prosecco, Italy
Our favorite Prosecco for the second year running. It’s dry and full of expressive bubbles, it’s organic, and it comes in a cool looking bottle. What better way to toast to your guests’ health?
$13.99

Gérard Bertrand Crémant, France
A velvety soft and creamy French sparkler that’s less acidic and bracing than a true Champagne at twice the price, meaning you can sip on it through the entire Thanksgiving meal. This is the bottle (or two, or three) to have on hand for special company.
$19.99

Pere Mata Cava, Spain
The great thing about Cavas is that they’re bone-dry, elegant, and wallet-friendly. The Pere Mata in particular has terrific citrus and floral notes that will complement everything from that rich turkey and gravy to your after-dinner slice of pie.
$17.99

Dry Creek Chenin Blanc, California
Here’s the perfect choice for an all-purpose Thanksgiving white, satisfying both your aunt who loves Sauvignon Blanc and your cousin Marie who only drinks Chardonnay. It’s dry, crisp, and refreshing with a subtle baked apple and vanilla quality. Yes, please.
$12.99

Michel Caillot “Les Herbeux,” France
Ah, Mersault! From the heart of France, this rich and creamy, understated yet persistent, incredibly floral and expressive Chardonnay will knock your socks off. Mersault is the Chardonnay that even non-Chardonnay drinkers love. It’s. That. Good. Treat yourself!
$34.99

Happy Thanksgiving!

(prices subject to change)

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Video! Learn about Sparkling Wine

learnaboutsparklingwine

What’s the difference between Champagne, cava, and prosecco? Watch a basic overview of these different sparkling wine categories with Eric Taylor, our resident wine expert at Bottles.

We’re here to help make sense of it, and so we have broken the giant world of sparkling wine into three really big categories:

Champagne and sparkling wines made in the style of Champagne:  

Champagne is not only a style of sparkling wine, but also a place.  Only sparkling wines made in the very small region of Champagne (just to the East of Paris) can be called Champagne.  Among other very strict regulations, Champagnes must be made in a very particular fashion: they must get their bubbles from a secondary fermentation that happens inside the bottle.  While this is costly and time consuming, it’s worth the extra effort because it gives Champagne its signature richness, complexity and tiny lively bubbles.  Some of the most famous and expensive wines in the world are from Champagne:  Dom Perignon, Louis Roederer’s Cristal, Krug and Veuve Clicquot.

New World wine makers, mainly from California, are making brilliant wines in the very same style and manner as Champagne.  These wines are made using the same grapes that are used in Champagne (Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier) and taking the effort and time to produce sparkling wines exactly as they would be made in France.  The biggest difference is price:  many top notch sparkling wines from California are half the price from their more famous counterparts in France.  Great examples are: Schramsberg, Mumm Napa, Chandon and Roederer Estate.

Prosecco:

Prosecco is a light, beautiful sparkling wine from the northeast corner of Italy made from a not so famous grape called Glera.  Proseccos are generally light and fruity, intensely aromatic, most with flavors of tart green apple, pear, white peach and apricot.  Prosecco is meant to be consumed young, and unlike Champagne, does not benefit from additional aging.  Also, prosecco is usually very inexpensive and makes it a great choice for large gatherings, casual parties and everyday drinking.  Some proseccos to look out for are: Mionetto, Ca’ Furlan, Bisson and Carpene Malvolti.

Cava:

Cava refers to sparkling wine made in Spain with the majority of it grown and produced in the Northeast corner of Spain around the grand city of Barcelona.  Cava has a long and rich wine making tradition in Spain, but has only recently gained popularity in the US.  The huge rise in popularity is due to the outrageous value that cava can offer.  Made in the exact same manner as expensive Champagne but with different grapes, cava is bright and vibrant but has many of the complex and sophisticated as its more expensive French counterpart.  Cava is great with cured meats, cheeses, appetizers and things that one would serve at a party.  Some of the most well known brands are Cristalino, Mercat and Raventos I Blanc.

Cheers!

Top 9 Bubbly Wines for the Holidays!

BUBBLY_PIN

There is no other category of wine in the store that can do or say so much than Sparkling Wine! Regardless of price, a glass of bubbly is the best way to start any occasion.  The ‘pop’ of the cork is the official sound of party time, and perfectly sets the tone of any gathering. Not only is sparkling wine delicious and one of the most versatile wines for food pairing, but also is the perfect way to say Thank You, I love you or Congratulations!

With so many choices, names and styles it can be difficult to pick a sparkling wine that suits your occasion or meal. We’ve simplified your decision making process by creating a list of our Top 9 Sparkling Wines for this holiday season. Cheers!

Download & Print the List >

Pol Roger Champagne – Good enough to be served at Kate and William’s royal wedding so it’s definitely good enough for any occasion at your home.  Classic Champagne with plenty of structure and delicious complex flavors.

Charles de Fère Blanc de Blancs – Made in the same style as Champagne, but much less expensive.  Made with 100% Chardonnay, it’s light and lively but has a deep and complex toastiness that makes it a great value.

Ca’ Furlan Prosecco – Our most popular wine in the store!  Beautiful and crisp and a perfect pairing with party time!  Superb value!

Schramsberg Blanc de Blancs – California’s premier sparkling wine producer and often poured at the White House for fancy state dinners.  Packed with gorgeous tropical fruit flavors, fresh green apple, roasted nuts and a long creamy finish.  Also available in a 1.5L!

Mercat Cava Brut – Beautiful Cava in a beautiful package. Aromas of creamy pear and apple burst out of the glass coupled with flavors of papaya and hints of toasted hazelnuts. So good!

Egly-Ouriet ‘Brut Tradition Grand Cru’ Champagne – The King of the ‘Grower Champagnes’! Made by the same people that grow the grapes, this is an absolute sleeper of a Champagne.  Dry, perhaps even austere, with some much complexity of flavor that you’ll be thinking of it for days after.

Mionetto Brut Prosecco – Perhaps the most iconic Prosecco in the world!  Intensely fruity aromas – very dry, fresh, light in body and well-balanced.  Perfect alone as an aperitif or as a complement to appetizers.  Also excellent as a base for Bellinis and other sparkling wine cocktails.

Möet & Chandon Imperial Brut Champagne – So much elegance and complexity wrapped up in one bottle!  Vibrant intensity of green apples and citrus fruits, freshness of mineral nuances and white flowers and elegance of brioche and fresh roasted nuts.

Chandon Rosé – A dramatic sparkling wine from California!  Deep pink color with intense ripe strawberry, juicy watermelon and fresh red cherry fruit flavors and aromas.  A very creamy and seductive wine that is bold and sure to make a big impact at any occasion.

Cheers!
Eric Taylor