Last week I was invited to attend the Champagne & Everything Bubbly event, part of the Kennedy Center's Roof Terrace Restaurant's Wine and Cultural Series. Sommelier John Coco said he wanted the collection of sparkling wines, which ranged from the Champagne houses Laurent-Perrier and Charles Heidsieck to domestics such as Schramsberg and Gloria Ferrer, to represent the major sparkling regions of the world to give guests an opportunity to taste the differences in bubbles by terrior, method, grape and dosage.
My favorites of the bunch included selections from Bellavista, which has more than 500 acres of vines in Franciacorta and produces lovely small-barrel sparklers, including a Gran Cuvée Saten made of single-vintage Chardonnay. This is not Prosecco. It glows golden and is filled with honeyed, peachy notes and a creamy mousse.
Schramsberg released the first American Blanc de Noirs and has clearly spent the last 45 years perfecting this toasty sipper. Pretty bubbles, a little acid and a super fruity nose (more peach! who knew I loved peach in my sparkling?!). Plus, it went great with the savory pepperoni and cheese straws -- while they lasted.