I suppose it's only fitting that my first post of 2009 is a
If you've read this blog before, you know I'm pretty ignorant when it comes to wine. That being said, I don't know if sparkling wines like this get a discount because they're not technically champagne, but I thought this drank way above its price tag. Like all New Year's beverages, it poured an effervescent light straw color with a rapidly-dissipating head. The nose was a wonderful combination of sweet grapes and honey with some subtle bready yeast notes.
Tasting the wine, I actually found it to be a bit sweet for a brut, though my wife disagreed (and she likes her wine quite dry) so maybe I'm just getting too used to dry wines. Regardless, it was a good, fruity sweet rather than a cheap, syrupy sweet. It's hard for me to pick out the specific sweet flavors (white grape juice would seem a bit redundant) but I would say there's some honey and cotton candy in the profile. As you swallow, the acidity keeps the sweetness from being cloying, along with a dryness of grape skins and apple peel. The finish is just dry enough to leave you coming back for another sip without becoming mouth-puckering.
Overall, a great wine to start off the New Year. I seriously wonder if this sparkling wine would be substantially more expensive if it were produced in the Champagne region of France. Either way, a great wine at a great price. On the patented Chibebräu Wine scale (skip it, only if it's on sale, or buy it again), this one is definitely a buy it again. Happy New Year!