Champagne is the go-to for the most extravagant of celebrations, and New Year’s Eve is incomplete without a glass of something bubbly and fun. We asked our sommelier team for their picks of what to sip as we ring in 2019!
What to say about Champagne… if I had to replace water with anything in the world, it would be champagne. One of the greatest vintages is a bottle of Salon 1997. For me, this bottle is the quintessence of Champagne. We always speak of Krug as the King of Champagne, but I find more finesse and sensuality in Salon. Salon is based in Le Mesnil-sur-Oger. It comes from a single plot and 19 strictly selected parcels, made exclusively from Chardonnay and only produced in the best years.
– Antonin Dubuis, Sommelier at Carbone
“In victory, you deserve Champagne; in defeat, you need it.” — Napoleon Bonaparte
The classic excuse for drinking Champagne in good times and in bad! One of my favourite regions in Champagne is Côte des Bar. I highly recommend Nathalie Falmet and her Cuvée Terra Extra Brut. Nathalie Falmet is a grower and enologist based in the village of Rouvres-les-Vignes. In 2008, she took over the family vineyard and has since controlled every aspect of the Champagne-making process from vineyard to bottle. The Cuvée Terra is a pure Chardonnay aged of Amphora based on the vintage 2012. Complex, fine bubbles, beautiful volume, and minerality compliment the aromas of ripe tree fruit. The limited bottle production makes it extra special and I could not think of a better way to welcome the New Year.
– Aurelie Taheri, Sommelier at Le Garçon Saigon
I like to go for a food-friendly sparkling wine. I would suggest the Laurent-Perrier Cuvée Rose Brut NV for a New Year’s celebration. Founded in 1812, Laurent-Perrier is known for elegant, finessed wines, and is one of the most popular Champagne houses. The packaging is inspired by the rather stubby bottles manufactured in the time of King Henri IV, and labeled with a luxurious monogrammed ‘LP’ shield to magnify this very special Cuvée. Only the greatest quality of Pinot Noir grapes are used, and its gorgeous pinky hue will really add a hint of glamour to any party. The wine is characterised by its ripe red fruit aromas with marvelous intensity and freshness. It is incredibly versatile and pairs well with party foods from salads to pasta, poultry to heavier meats like beef, and even spicy, sour Asian foods.
– Johann Kwon, Sommelier at Carbone
Champagne is the only way to properly ring in the New Year! I would suggest the Agrapart & Fils Grand Cru Mineral Blanc de Blancs 2008. Pascal Agrapart is a grower at the top of his game. He is working on 70 small plots in the Côte des Blancs, mostly in the subregion of Avize. No pesticides, fertilizers, or herbicides are used. The vinification (the fermentation process) occurs in large 600-litre old oak barrels. This particular Cuvée is from two plots: Avize and Cramant. It is a very pretty wine with lots of layers and stony minerality, flavours include ripe pear and green apple. It is savoury, saline, elegant, refined, and long-lasting on the palate. A must-try Champagne!
– Arnaud Bardary, Group Sommelier
Champagne is pretty much synonymous with New Year’s Eve. I suggest pairing this special occasion with Cristal 2002 by Louis Roederer. An extraordinary year with all the qualities of an exceptional vintage in Champagne. This impressive and seductive Champagne was aged on its lees for six years before being matured for another nine years in bottle. Elegant, harmonious, full-bodied, energetic and precise, as the clock strikes midnight, delight yourself with a sip of freshness and a menthol touch that gives it an intense finish.
– Tamara Amaya, Sommelier at Buenos Aires Polo Club