The diversity that is sparkling wine

J, Russian River Valley, cuvee 20 nv Clean, fresh, fruit, tasted at the winery in May. This wine has the zip of fresh green apples. The base wine is from a recent vintage with 25% oak-aged reserves adding to the final blend. The wine is aged for 3 years on the lees after the 2nd ferment, disgorged and given a dosage of 15 grams per litre. The varietal breakdown is 49% Chardonnay, 49% Pinot Noir and 2% Pinot Meunier. P&B in Healdsburg 12.5% purchased for $21.99 at Bottle Barn in July 2008 and $17.99 in July 2010 J

Perrier-Jouet, Champagne, Cuvee Belle Epoque, Fleur de Champagne, Brut 1999 This house has always emphasized a fruit-forward style. With 9 years since the harvest, there is certainly complexity as well. This wine smells like a fresh fruit tart, with some lovely pastry cream. The acid is rounded off and the fruit comes across as backed apples. Unfortunately the bottle tasted in August ’09 was corked and the best of this wine’s fruity stamp is not showing. The base wine is about half and half Chardonnay and Pinot Noir with a touch of Pinot Meunier. P&B in Epernay, NM-267-001, 12.5% $115 at Bottle Barn, up to $134 in August ’09 Perrier-Jouet

Tintero, Moscato d’Asti DOCG 2007 While this is not as concentrated as the best of the region, it’s dirt cheap and does hold true to the textbook values of orange blossoms and light-bodied, refreshing, lightly fizzy dessert wine. Vinified and bottled in Mango 5% $9.99 at Traverso’s Tintero

About Ray

Ray Johnson is the Executive Director of the Wine Business Institute at Sonoma State University. He writes about food and wine, his travels and the business of wine. He makes his home in Sonoma County, California.
This entry was posted in California, Champagne, Chardonnay, France, Italy, Moscato d'Asti, Muscat, Piemonte, Sparkling sweet. Bookmark the permalink.

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