Bubbles, bubbles, bubbles
The latest issue of Wine Spectator has an article entitled "American Sparkling Wines Surge," which goes on to review and list some of the best sparkling wines the U.S. has to offer (in their opinion). I've long been a fan of U.S. sparklers, which are often much cheaper than their Champagne counterparts. And, since some of the U.S. producers were started by French Champagne houses (Mumm, Roederer and Domaine Chandon, for example), you get the French influence and experience, without the price tag.
Here are some of my favorites (many of which are also reviewed in the article...)
* Schramsberg: This northern Napa producer was responsible for supplying the White House with sparkling wines from the Nixon administration up through and including the Clinton administration (not sure what George W. is serving these days...) Their make a refined Blanc de Blancs, a full-bodied Blanc de Noirs, and several others.
* Mumm Napa Valley: My favorite offering from this house is Cuvee M (blue label), which has some berry aroma and flavor, along with a bit of bite.
* Domaine Ste. Michelle: These sparklers are made in WA by Chateau Ste. Michelle, and are an absolute steal. My favorite is the Blanc de Blancs, which has crisp apple and pear and some toasty notes.
Consider a domestic bottle of bubbly for your New Year's Eve celebration. We have lots of great ones to offer in this country.