Napa Valley’s Domaine Chandon has consistently been a go-to destination for wine tasting in Yountville, but particularly so for their illustrious sparkling wines. These delectable bubblies are all made from traditional Champagne grape varieties—Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier—grown in the Yountville, Carneros and Mount Veeder appellations. Prices for their collection range from $22-$50, so there is a sparkling wine at a comfortable price point for everyone. What’s more, is that the sugar levels of these sparkling wines are just as broad—offering dry to sweet bottling’s for every palate preference.
One of their new releases, Délice—which in French means delicious—is a semi-sweet sparkling wine that still maintains the crisp, refreshing characteristics we all know and love. Enticing aromatics of yellow peaches, mixed stone fruit, honey, fresh baked bread and crushed almonds hover above the glass in beautiful synchronicity. On the palate, similar fruit flavors of yellow peach, sweetened peaches, white nectarine, and a touch of lime zest are complemented by soft notes of honeysuckle. The bubbles are delicate but strong, and the body is quite round when enjoyed at not too cold of a serving temperature.
This semi-sweet bottling is both enjoyable on its own, as well as in accompaniment with a whole host of appetizers, main dishes and desserts that are perfect for the holiday season. One of our favorite holiday appetizer pairings for a semi-sweet sparkling wine, like Délice, is a classic soft French cheese plate. The natural pairing of French grape varieties and French cheeses just never seems to get old—and how can anyone resist enjoying a delicious cheese plate with some bubbly before dinner? Soft, creamy cheeses are well suited to sparkling wine, enhancing the mouthfeel to create wonderful textures on the palate.
For main dishes, sparkling wine pairs exceptionally well with Thanksgiving turkey and holiday ham. Both choices, depending on what kind of sauce is served, are gentle enough to not overpower the delicate texture and flavors of sparkling wine. The semi-sweetness of Délice would provide added flavor complexity to these main dish pairings, and of course, make any gathering more festive.
We also love pairing dessert with semi-sweet sparkling wines. The stone fruit and honeysuckle characteristics of the Délice beg for stone fruit tarts and pies. Not only will the fruit flavors complement each other, but the warm, flaky pastry will pick up on those fresh baked bread and crushed almond notes and synergize wonderfully on the palate.
*Originally published on Feast it Forward.