Food-friendly and diverse, sparkling wines are popping right now, proving they’re not just for special occasions. The Wine Society presents classic examples of fine fizz to share with good people.
The clock’s ticked past 5pm and your thoughts have moved to the weekend – though if you’re honest, that happened at least three hours ago. What better way to bring it on than with bubbles? There are plenty of affordable non-vintage Australian sparklings, so let The Wine Society help you choose. The Tomich Hill M Sparkling Chardonnay Pinot Noir NV is a vibrant Adelaide Hills drop that will help put the working week behind you in style.
DINNER PARTY ON
Is the boss/potential life partner/Prince Harry coming to dinner? Then take things up a notch with a vintage sparkling Australian wine. Made from grapes grown in a single year, vintage sparklings reflect the unique conditions of each growing season and most are priced well below non-vintage Champagnes. For a sophisticated, zesty, beautifully crisp and creamy wine, try the Kreglinger Vintage Brut 2007 from Tasmania.
You’ve got the blanket, basket, prawns, bread, dips and ant-attracting delicacies you spent hours baking. Now, what’s your picnic missing? A great sparkling rosé, that’s what. Red wine lends rosés both structure and bold flavours. Add natural acidity and you have a recipe for versatile food pairing, perfect for picnics and barbecues. Generous and elegant, Chandon Brut Rosé NV is a classic pinot noir-led Aussie crowd pleaser.
One of the newer kids on the wine block, at least here in Australia, is prosecco. Light, fresh and more fruit-focused than many traditional sparklings, it’s as if this Italian-originated wine style was made especially for the Australian way of life. For weekend afternoons spent sipping in the sunshine, it’s difficult to go past the crisp apple and pear flavours and lovely long, dry finish of the See Saw Prosecco 2016.
WINNER BY A NOSE
Sparkling wines are particularly popular at the track with fascinator-flaunting and suitsporting punters enjoying the Spring Racing Carnival. Putting your money on French is usually a safe bet and the bright and racy Kriter Brut Blanc de Blancs looks and tastes the part, delivering just the right amount of je ne sais quoi. This one is a firm favourite with members of The Wine Society for good reason.
MARK THE MOMENT
Of course, all this doesn’t mean there is no place for Champagne. There is still nothing quite like it for life’s biggest moments. Billecart-Salmon Brut Réserve ticks all the boxes for wow factor but, more importantly, the wine inside the bottle more than lives up to the hype. Elegance and finesse are hallmarks of this famous Champagne, justifying its place at any special birthday or anniversary.