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Staff Favorites - Mari Keilman
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Ariston Aspasie Brut Rosé Champagne
Review Date: 5-25-2010
The Ariston Aspasie rosé ($32.99) is such a richly impressive, full-bodied rosé made up of 50% pinot noir and 50% pinot meunier. 12% vinified still red pinot meunier is added to give this rosé its beautiful salmon color. What makes this rosé stand out amongst the crowd of trendy charlatans is the 5 years it is aged on its lees. The complexity, the richness, the layers of berry fruit balanced by vibrant acidity and lazy bubbles is matched by only a few lone standouts in a rosé world full of so many imposters.
Delamotte Brut Champagne
Review Date: 12-30-2009
I had the wonderful opportunity to taste the Delamotte Brut in a blind tasting of six wines, and this stood out as one of my favorites. My notes were riddled with adjectives like zesty, fresh and zippy, which can be attributed to the Le Mesnil Chardonnay fruit. There is also an amazing balance of stone fruit, Meyer lemon and a touch of toast on the finish.
Franck Bonville "Prestige" Brut Blanc de Blancs Champagne
Review Date: 8-5-2009
I had this champagne on my birthday and it was the perfect bubbly for the occassion! Bright and fresh with tons of blanc de blanc fruit, it is also incredibly rich and creamy due to its extended lees contact. It was the ideal champagne to toast the beginning of the festivities and continued its perfection as it paired beautifully with all the food for the evening.
Franck Bonville Grand Cru Blanc de Blancs Champagne
Review Date: 7-14-2009
Talk about the perfect summertime Champagne!!! Crisp, refreshing, and vibrant with just the perfect balance of citrus and acidity coupled with copious amounts of teeny tiny bubbles. It was the perfect compliment to my fresh chips and salsa!
Franck Bonville "Belles Voyes" Brut Blanc de Blancs Champagne
Review Date: 6-11-2009
This champagne is definitley worthy of being referred to as a "baby Krug". Fresh and bright, yet with amazing aromatics of asian spice, lemon curd, orange zest and a touch of brioche. Always a stellar standout!
Bollinger "Special Cuvée" Brut Champagne
Review Date: 5-20-2008
A pinot noir-dominated blend that immediately after opening, has a distinctive leesy, slightly oxidated nose. This is no doubt from the reserve wines that are fermented in oak barrel and then aged in magnums under low pressure. This also lends to the full-bodied, richness of the wine. After several minutes of aeration, the sweet smell of ripe, sun-soaked apples begin to emerge. The predominance of estate fruit (approximately 70% of the assemblage) lends to the broad, rich and intense flavors. Fresh and toasty on the palate with a slight touch of hazelnut, the Special Cuvee has a long finish with a hint of exotic spice at the very end.
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