#NWTW: French Sparkling, NOT Champagne

#NWTW: French Non-Champagne Sparkling Wine
The #NWTW wine of the week this week is sparkling wine from France, but not Champagne.  For much of France, the wines are labeled “Crémant”, but this doesn’t apply exclusively.  As long as it was made in the same method as Champagne (Methode Champenoise or Methode Traditionnelle), we would be all set.  We chose this one:

François Chidaine Montlouis sur Loire Methode Traditionnelle ($22 locally)
Eye: Bright, clear rich yellow. Very lively large bubbles; not a fine mousse.
Nose: Rich brioche, yeasty nose.
Mouth: Very lively sparkling wine, bright, dry but not severe.  Very nice!

François Chidaine is a winegrower in the Loire. Montlouis is right across the river from Vouvray, and the main grape, like Vouvray, is Chenin Blanc. His estate has been farmed biodynamically since 2003, but he doesn’t want that to be his calling card, he wants his wines to be noticed for their own merits.  There is no mention of the methods on the bottles of his wines.

Sparkling Chenin Blanc from Francois Chidaine

Sparkling Chenin Blanc from Francois Chidaine

Wine Pairings: Curry Spiced Roasted Cauliflower and Oysters on the Half Shell
I started out thinking that oysters would be fun.  Oysters on their own, however, don’t seem like a full meal, so I thought I’d roast some cauliflower as well.

What a weird combination.  The wine tasted great with both of the foods.  However, the foods didn’t really work together!  The oysters, as usual, gave a clear impression of fresh, alive, the cool ocean.  The curry spice on the cauliflower, while nice, brought to mind a hot humid summer day.  Such different impressions.  Wine pairing to food, check and check.  Food pairing to food, #fail!

Oysters and Curry Roasted Cauliflower

Oysters and Curry Roasted Cauliflower

Weird- the wine paired with both foods, but the foods didn't work with each other!

Weird- the wine paired with both foods, but the foods didn’t work with each other!

If you’re interested in joining our group, just check out the two bloggers who are the masterminds:

Confessions of a Wine Geek

Please Bring Me My Wine

Check in on the new wine every Monday, and tweet with the hashtag #NWTW!


3 Responses to “#NWTW: French Sparkling, NOT Champagne”
  1. Cremant has certainly proved a popular choice this week… I think we may some more sparkling selections in the coming weeks, especially now the sun is threatening to make an appearance!

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