Sparkling wines to help end the year on a bubbly note


My final recommendations for 2017 include two superb champagnes, a vibrant Franciacorta from Italy, a rich, sophisticated bubbly from Burgundy and a sparkler from Patagonia that just may turn your palate upside down. And for a holiday bonus: Let's add a fizzy sweet malvasia from Italy for your holiday brunch.

GREAT VALUE

Ayala Brut Majeur

Champagne, France, $40

When first poured and cold, this wine was crisp and mineral, bracing and refreshing. As it warmed it became exotic, with the flavors of candied ginger, cardamom and cloves. Alcohol by volume: 12 percent.

Barone Pizzini Animante Brut

Franciacorta, Italy, $35

Franciacorta is made in the champagne method, with the second (bubbles-producing) fermentation in the bottle. But this is brighter and fruitier than champagne. ABV: 12 percent.

Delamotte Brut

Le Mesnil-sur-Oger, Champagne, France, $54

Made by the producers of Salon, arguably the rarest, most sought-after champagne, Delamotte is more like champagne as we know it, and it is top-notch. It is on the richer side, with some toasty brioche flavors and a hint of ginger spice. ABV: 12 percent.

GREAT VALUE

Domaine de la Denante Blanc de Blancs Crémant de Bourgogne

Burgundy, France, $24

Elegant, with serious aspirations - plus depth, complexity and character. ABV: 12 percent.

GREAT VALUE

Malma Cuvée Reserve Extra Brut

Patagonia, Argentina, $21

This vibrant blend of pinot noir and chardonnay is electric with bright flavors of orchard fruit and berries. ABV: 12.5 percent.

Bonelli Malvasia Amabile Frizzante 2016

Colli Piacentini, Italy, $13

This slightly spritzy wine will appeal to anyone with a sweet tooth. Flowery and tropical, it is delicious on its own or with spicy foods or cured meats. Ideal for a holiday brunch. ABV: 8.5 percent.


Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Food

Kraft Heinz embraces Momofuku Sauce in bid for foodie cachet

Kraft Heinz Co., struggling with sliding sales and a falling stock price, is partnering with celebrity chef David Chang to generate some buzz. The ketchup maker will use its expertise in food production and distribution to help Chang take his Momofuku Ssam sauce national for the first time. The condiment, which has been served across the chef's restaurant...
Restaurant review: Gallery Grille in Tequesta
Restaurant review: Gallery Grille in Tequesta

THE PLACE: There’s a full-scale restaurant hiding in this daylight café tucked into a corner of Tequesta’s Gallery Square North plaza. The stylish Gallery Grille may be open just for breakfast, lunch and Sunday brunch, but it welcomes you like a place with dinnertime aspirations. With a handsomely set dining room, and a sweet, brick-paved...
Best bites: Newman’s Own Honey Apple Cider Vinaigrette
Best bites: Newman’s Own Honey Apple Cider Vinaigrette

At a time when so many foods are lauded as extreme and flavor-forward, it is refreshing to come upon a product that is understated and pleasant. Newman’s Own Honey Apple Cider Vinaigrette offers a mild apple flavor that tempers the tang of apple cider vinegar with the moderate sweetness of honey. It’s a natural combination, enhanced by...
My husband is a vegetarian, but my children and I are not. What will make everyone happy?
My husband is a vegetarian, but my children and I are not. What will make everyone happy?

The Washington Post Food staff recently answered questions about all things edible. Here are edited excerpts from that chat. Recipes whose names are capitalized can be found in our Recipe Finder at washingtonpost.com/recipes. A: Have you thought of making things that you can adapt for the different needs of your family? Maybe you're not up for doing...
Americans waste about a quarter of the food they buy
Americans waste about a quarter of the food they buy

The mass quantities of food Americans waste every year has staggering environmental consequences, according to a study published Wednesday. "Our data suggest that the average person in the United States wastes about a pound of food per day," said the University of Vermont's Meredith Niles, one of the study's authors along with researchers...
More Stories