Magnums for New Year’s Eve, Please

You don’t need that corkscrew and you could drink it out of that Charley Harper tumbler. Sharpie may come in handy at some point.

I put together a little roundup of New Year’s Eve sparkling wine suggestions for Wine Enthusiast. My pick? Naturally, rosé Champagne. But the selections run the gamut from fizzy to fancy.

One thing I forgot to mention when it comes to New Year’s Eve bottles is GO BIG. I was reminded of this when I went to my neighborhood wine shop, Dandelion Wine, to pick up a bottle for Christmas. I ended up taking home a 1.5L of this wine:

Lini 910 Labrusca Rosso Lambrusco 

A dry, fizzy delight. When opened, it did not last long. I paid $36 for it, a bargain. And though this is not a full-on sparkler, explosive with bubbles, Lambrusco is one of the most f00d-friendly wines out there. It loves cured meats, pizza, really almost anything you can throw at it. (And for a red wine, very low in alcohol: 11%.)

Have you done your NYE wine shopping yet? Here’s your last-minute guide:

14 Spectacular Sparklers for New Year’s Eve

Also Happy New Year! It’s been a crazy year first year in New York and I’m very happy to be settled in Greenpoint, where I hope to be for a while. Here’s a little scene of how charming my new neighborhood is during the holidays. Thank you all for reading.

Magnums for New Year’s Eve, Please


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Inclusive and affordable wines for Thanksgiving 2016

For no good reason at all---except that I flunk self-promotion, the wines I send out monthly to The Feiring Line Wine Society are cloaked in secrecy.  I've a right mind to change that and giving the mono-chrome political climate, it seems correct that I break the silence with Thanksgiving.

This year the message is poignant;  resist the mono-varietal supremacy and go for the blend. A melange of grapes in a bottle make plenty of sense. These can be perfectly wonderful melting pot way of celebrating the diversity that makes America great, even though some---like the current president elect---see nothing to praise.

All are in featured in my annual Econoplus issue---great wines under $18

All organic or biodynamic. All with low So2 (none here have zero). 




2014 Podere Giardino Lambrusco “Suoli Cataldi"

Where: Emilia-Romagna, Italy

Grapes:  Mostly lambrusco marani, lambrusco salamino, and lambrusco oliva. 10% is divided between ancellotta and malbo gentile. 

 Here I give you one winner from the 2016 Wine Without Walls award that I presided over at VinItaly. It's an example of how Emilia's wines are singing excitement. A red lambrusco. This specific one comes from a 1.5ha plot with a sandy clay soils locally called ‘Cataldi.’ It's firm, earthy,  refreshing, blending the the bubble with tannin in an exciting way. Classic pairing is prosciuitti and all things cured and piggy, but think larger--or smaller, depending on how big a turkey you're dealing with.



NV Leon Boesch Edelzwicker

Where: Alsace, France

Grape: sylvaner, pinot blanc, pinot gris, muscat

A full liter for a good price makes this fun wine even more of an event. It's NV but based on the 2013 vintage. Absolutely perfect for Thanksgiving, whether a host gift or plunked on your own table.  Why? Edelzwicker is a category in Alsace for blends, and what is Thanksgiving other than a blend of humans from all over. Celebrate that with a  bottled field blend. As far as the vigneron?  I'm in love with everything Boesch. Raised in old foudres, balanced, peach and peach pit, with a good dose of grapefruit acidity that makes you reach for more. 



Grange Tiphaine Ad Libatum 2015

Where: Touraine-Amboise, Loire Valley,France

Grape: cot, gamay, cabernet franc

Damien Delecheneau's entry level wine has become way more serious when he stopped doing carbo. This is now reborn as a  beautiful wine from organic vines between 15-45 years grown in limestone soils. Raised in tank, with no wood involvement we have purity, structure, velvet, bones, dusty fruit underneath it all. 



2013 Cellers de Can Suriol Azimut Negre

From: Penedes, Spain

Grapes 40% ull de llebre (tempranillo), 20% garnatxa, 20% monastrell, 10% syrah, 10% samsó (carignan)

 Suriol is among those pioneering natural in the Penedes so forgive the terrible packaging. What lies beneath is and adult wine worthy of the crowd, or the Friday after the holiday when you want casual. This actually over delivers. S It's velvety, mentholated cherry and a good dollop of acid. 



The blend of grapes, an ancient tradition. Never forget it.