Wednesday, May 27, 2009

A nice sparkler from Alsace

I have been in somewhat of a celebratory mood, as I switch from one job to another. It is not that I feel particularly good about leaving the old job, but starting a new job is exciting.

Therefore, I feel that a little bit of bubbly is just what the doctor called for. I received a bottle of Domaine Albert Mann Cremant D'Alsace Brut NV (lot 34) a little while ago and now seemed to be the perfect time to open it.

A quick note about the term Cremant: Cremant is a label used for sparkling wines outside of the region of Champagne to denote a wine that was made using the Champagne method (methode champenoise/traditionnelle).

It is rare that I find myself really enjoying a sparkling wine. When I do find myself liking one, it usually turns out to be a Muscato D'Asti or other extremely sweet wine. I think I have been too affected by my upbringing through the Coca Cola culture.

Many of my female friends think I am crazy, as they all claim to love sparkling wines. Perhaps they do, or maybe they just like the prestige that a bottle with a cork that POPS brings to the table. At the last Wine Spectator California Wine Experience, I had the opportunity to wander around with one of my wine mentors (there have been quite a few) and he told me that it had taken him a while to get into bubblies as well. However, he had an epiphany that bubbly was just another wine and it changed his perspective.

All that said, I really enjoyed the Albert Mann. It balanced beautifully between the fruity sweetness I love and the drying acidity of the bubbles. It is definitely a wine made for food and I was lucky enough to have a pan fried chicken with broccoli and potato crisps on hand. The wine was very pleasantly accented with apple and lemon flavors. The bubbles brought a little bitterness which nicely balanced the fruit. There was a little tartness to it, but I think the food matched it to make me want to go from eating to drinking and back again.

A nice wine and for $22, I think it is worth checking out for the next time you need a good bubbly.
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