by Sandra Crittenden

by Sandra Crittenden

Monday, January 25, 2016

André Clouet Champagne Grand Cru "Silver" Brut Nature

Sparkling Wine of the Week: André Clouet Champagne Grand Cru "Silver" Brut Nature 

My husband purchased this bottle for us at Spec's in Midtown Houston when he was out shopping for some wine and spirits gifts for a few coworkers over the holidays. The Champagnes of André Clouet are favorites at our home so he snapped this up when he saw it. This small production sparkling wine comes from the Champagne village of Bouzy which is known for its high quality Pinot Noir. The grapes for this wine were sourced from the sunnier mid-slope section of the Grand Cru vineyard. There is no sugar added to this 100% Pinot Noir wine and it is aged in neutral oak barrels.

Creamier and a bit fuller-bodied than many sparkling wines, this wine is dry and crisp with fresh bakery aromas of brioche over apricot and light cherry notes. Similar flavors with a touch of citrus in the lingering mineral-laced finish.

Though enjoyable alone, it can be an elegant alternative for heartier dinner fare, we enjoyed it with slow-roasted pork and vegetables, approximately $50.

Monday, January 11, 2016

Ruinart Blanc de Blancs

Sparkling Wine of the Week- Ruinart Champagne Blanc de Blancs

If you read this often then you know that I am very partial to the non-vintage Ruinart Champagne Blanc de Blancs. It is now the splurge offering by the glass at Liberty Kitchen & Oysterette in the Uptown area of Houston. I've enjoyed it at the bar with the Chesapeake crab balls a few times while waiting for a table. As it is offered by the bottle as well, my husband and I enjoy sharing it with the raw oysters, the sushi of the day, the tuna poke and the whole lobster as well. 

Always recommended, this crisp, mineral-driven sparkling is a favorite with Liberty's fresh seafood menu.

Monday, January 4, 2016

Champagne Duval-Leroy Brut

Sparkling Wine of the Week: Champagne Duval-Leroy Brut

On New Year's day, my husband and I cook some version of the traditional southern meal that my family has always enjoyed. Every year we serve pork for continued good health, cabbage or some type of greens for prosperity and black-eyed peas for good luck. A tradition that we have added is the serving of bubbles to start the meal for a bit of added enrichment. This year we popped open a magnum sized bottle of Champagne Duval-Leroy Brut to greet our guests, many of whom opted to continue with it throughout the meal. 

A blend of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, this wine has predominantly nutty aromas and flavors over lemon custard with a lingering mineral-laced finish. Approximately $65 for the magnum bottle.