Like any wine reviewer knows, you must have range and understand value wines in addition to wines created with financial backing to create some of the world’s best. If you’re like me, your budget doesn’t allow a pricey bottle of bubbles more than once a year, if that. My goal is to share some favorite finds of affordable bubbles.
Here are two options: one sweet and one dry, one that hails from Piedmont, Italy, and one that’s made in Argentina. These are two different choices, so one will hopefully work for you!
Honestly, moscato is a hit or miss grape for my palate. But for those who enjoy a 100% Italian (Piedmont) moscato bianco with a bit of bubbles – and love sweet wine – you’ll want to purchase a bottle of Lucia Bosio Vineyards 2016 Moscato d’Asti D.O.C.G. ($17.99). Although this wine wasn’t one of my favorites, it will be somebody’s special sweet wine of summer. Enjoy with fruits, aged cheeses or hazelnut cake, or simply as an aperitif.
This is a wine with just a bit of bubbles created with secondary fermentation, or “pris de mousse” that took place over two months in its own yeast.
What is “pris de mousse” you ask? The secret to a successful secondary fermentation is in the temperature of the cellar. For this wine, the two months brought forth aromas of pear and taste of green apple.
My next review pleased my palate much better. Made with 100% chardonnay, the sparkling Toso Brut NV produced by Pascual Toso from the region of Maipu, Mendoza in Argentina proved to be celebratory. This was a perfectly balanced inexpensive bottle of bubbles ($12.99) to enjoy as a toast to celebrate any occasion: breakfast (w/some OJ), lunch or dinner works for me! There aren’t layers of character to this wine, so it would be considered unrefined, but it is crisp, bright and refreshing on its own.