I'm drinking Saint-Hilaire tonight!

Sunday, September 6, 2009

It's the end of the year, and while many people will be drinking a bevy of sparkling wines and incorrectly calling it champagne (that always gets me when some folks think that it having the name 'champagne' makes it a better and more classy drinking experience).

The more I learn about wine, the more I learn about wine.  I have written on Champagne, as well as other sparkling wines, or bubblies, such as Prosecco, Asti, Franciacorta, Fresita, Cava, and Brachetto.  I haven't touched upon Sekt yet, which is sparkling wine from Germany and Austria), but I have had that as well as Crémant, which is a term for sparkling wine from France but not from the Champagne region.

Well, this time, I was looking around for a nice bottle of bubbly to have for New Year's Eve, and while I saw a couple nice interesting bottles that were quality and a nice sugar level (demi sec of course; for those that don't remember, brut is extra, extra dry), I cam across a bottle that caught my eye before, but never my interest.  This time, it changed.  The wine is a white sparkling wine made in the traditional method (secondary fermentation in the bottle), but from a different appellation than Champagne, and this appellation is Blanquette de Limou, which is produced in the famous Languedoc region of France.  

And on the bottle, it claims to be France's oldest sparkling wine.

What differs mostly from Champagne is the grapes, with the main one being Mauzac, locally known as Blanquette, and then Chardonnay and Chenin blanc (the latter also known as Vouvray).  It also has to be at least 90% Mauzac.  That said, the taste should be generally and predominantly that of apple.

The most famous aspect of this wine is that it's also the oldest example of sparkling wine, which was first produced in 1531.

And while other people are drinking champagnes and wines that they think are champagnes, I'll be content with opening my mind, my vision and my palate, and drinking what they are having in Limoux, France.  You know I poo poo on the French, but this year, I am going to give some of their lesser known folks a little praise.

Happy New Year's folks!

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Our Mission: The Black Winer strives to expose African Americans [and others] to wines, without the flair, stuffiness, and airs of elitism and snobbery that you get from sommeliers and high level wine enthusiasts. We believe in finding something that you like the taste of, outside of the basic brands that you have been force-fed over the years through a combination of ethnically targeted advertising, and what people in your family have historically been drinking.

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