For this New Year's Eve, I'm going to rerun a piece I wrote for Accidental Hedonist last year at this time. While I did talk about a few expensive wines for very special occasions, many of the wines I choose for this article were inexpensive or at least great values.
What are you drinking on New Year's Eve?
One of my resolutions last year was to drink more sparkling wine. During 2007 my dear drinking companion (husband Ed) and I have sipped from bottles of bubbles priced from $7 to $150.
We usually have a few bottles of Cava or Barefoot Bubbly in our wine rack. And, we always have one sparkler chilled and ready just in case there's a reason to celebrate.
On the other end of the price spectrum, we welcomed the holiday season this year, by popping a bottle of Krug that we had cellared for five years. We shared that with some special friends. (On a sad note- we had to open two bottles of Krug. The first one was way, way off. It made us wish we hadn't waited so long.)
As the months passed, we began to realize how many perfectly wonderful values there are in this category.
Gruet Blanc de Noirs ($15) from New Mexico is delightful. Proseccos, like Nino Franco Prosecco di Valdobbiadere Rustico ($15), open a whole new world of Italian joy. Cavas are worth an OLE!
And, our own Massachusetts neighbors at Westport Rivers Vineyards are doing us proud. Although, their prices have skyrocketed as demand for their wines has grown.
For our rooftop, July 4th Fireworks party we served magnums of Argyle Brut from Oregon's Willamette Valley. That runs about $75 now but we bought it long ago at a special case price from our value-seeking wine mentors at Bauer Wines here in Boston.
Now the time has come to choose our New Year's Eve selection. A drum roll please! And the winner is a lovely bottle of Champagne Billecart-Salmon Rose NV. ($100)
We've tasted this against a few other rose sparklers over the years, and it seems to come out on top each time. We'd like to taste it against at least one great contender on the 31st. I'm turning to my new friends at AH (Accidental Hedonist) for suggestions.
Update: In the end, we tasted the Billecart against its sibling the Billecart Brut and a bottle of Bollinger. Billecart still won our hearts but we do hesitate at the price.
We also decided that New Years Eve was not often enough for a serious toast to a new start. We resolved to drink sparking wine the first of every month in 2008.
We have kept our resolution and we have ever intention of keeping that resolve going for another year. Join us in lifting a glass of sparkle the first of every month in 2009!
Accidental Hedonist is a wonderful food blog lead by Kate Hopkins. We are all looking forward to her upcoming book on whiskeys & other spirits.
Bauer Wine & Spirits
337 Newbury Street, Boston MA