Last Call for Holiday Bubblies


It’s all up to you to choose which sparkling wines you’ll pop to toast the New Year and the holidays of your choice.

’Tis the season for sparkling wines, as much a part of the holidays and New Year season as fruitcake, rum punch, and holiday ham — and we’ve tasted a dozen of them.

Here is the fourth and final review of holiday sparkling wines; it’s now all up to you to choose which ones you’ll pop to toast the New Year and ring in the holidays of your choice. There is quite a range of choices here — sparkling wines from America’s East and West Coasts, bubblies from the prosecco and lambrusco regions of Italy, and a trifecta of fizz from France: Limoux, Alsace, and granddaddy Champagne itself.

Adami “Col Credas” Valdobbiadene prosecco superiore brut 2013 ($17)

Green fruitiness with lots of minerality, very fine bubbles, and long, penetrating, refreshing finish.

NV Adami “Garbel” Treviso prosecco brut ($16)

Quite floral, a little tangy, good body, and, as always with an Adami wine, a great finish.

NV Lamberti prosecco extra dry ($12)

Pastel fruitiness, lots of bubbles and cream and a good texture — rich and filling.

NV Biltmore Estate blanc de blanc brut ($25)

North Carolina’s Biltmore makes wines from grapes it grows and buys locally as well as those from California. I could find no heritage on this label, so it is most likely a southern comfort — pleasant apple-pear flavors, clean-tasting yet not as delicate as most blanc de blancs.

NV Cleto Chiarli Vecchia Modena premium lambrusco secco ($16)

A red bubbly — fruity with quince and apple flavors, yet light with a good finish.

NV Napa Mumm brut prestige ($19)

Complex flavors of dried strawberries, tingling yeastiness and flaky toast. Good structure and a crisp, minerally finish.

NV Mumm Napa reserve rosé brut ($20)

Tart red fruit flavors and a pleasant metallic finish — not as long or as elegant as the white.

NV L’Agapé “Emotion” cremant d’Alsace brut ($17). Bready, milled wheat aromas with creamy flavors of crushed white grapes. It does need more structure — a soft middle palate and a short finish.

2011 Saint-Hilaire Blanquette de Limoux semi-sweet ($12)

Sweet sparklers, I think, have a more limited range of appeal than drier ones, but this is a nice one — almond cookies with lots of mousse and a soft finish.

NV Laurent-Perrier Champagne brut ($45)

Big and bold apple flavors up front with a lemony finish. A firm, muscular, young Champagne that grabs your attention — and holds it.

NV Laurent-Perrier Champagne rosé brut ($73)


Another firm wine, yet very seductive and charming. Excellent creamy red fruits with a rich and satisfying finish.