Toasting the New Year like a Pro

How to select bubbles like a career wine buyer

“Champagne is not just for celebrations,” goes the old statement in every beverage manager training manual, “but champagne is perfect for celebrations!”  It is time to bid farewell to a tumultuous 2020 and bring in the new year with an inside look at what beverage professionals will be pouring in their flutes this New Year’s Eve.  From new world sparkling wine to champagne, prosecco, cava and so many more, there is a sparkling wine for every budget and palate.  Here are some of our favorites to usher in the new year:

The Standard  Veuve Clicquot – Yellow Label Brut ($$$)
Starting off the list is one of the most notable sparkling wines from Champagne.  Veuve’s Yellow Label is the signature champagne of the House and is a standard among wine lists everywhere.  This dry (brut), balanced wine brings aromas of yellow and white fruits, vanilla, brioche bread.  Take a sip and enjoy the citrus and pear flavors married with a silky-smooth texture.  While enjoyed by sommeliers the world over, this classic champagne is the perfect introduction the sparkling wine newcomers.

The Crowd Pleaser  La Marca Prosecco ($)
Twenty years ago, very few wine industry watchers would point to an Italian sparkling (prosecco) brand leading all sparkling wine sales in America.  La Marca stands out as a giant in the industry presenting a crisp, clean product with aromas of honeysuckle, fresh lemon and tastes of green apple, peach, and citrus.  It is light, subtly sweet, refreshing, and affordable.  Pop this cork and it will be clear how it soared to top of national sales.

The Neo-Traditionalist  Anna de Codorníu Cava – Blanc de Blancs ($)
Cava, the traditional Spanish sparkling wine, is on the rise and brings the best of old-world flavors and methodology at a price the everyday consumer can celebrate.  Hailing from Catalonia, Spain, Cava is one of the most Champagne-like sparkling wines on the market.  With fine bubbles and tropical fruit with sourdough notes on the nose, Anna’s creamy, dry, long-lasting finish leaves your palate craving more. 

The New-World Connoisseur  Schramsberg Brut Rosé ($$)
Think the best sparkling wines come from across the Atlantic?  Think again.  Schrambsberg Vineyards crafts their brut rosé in the Méthode Traditionnelle (a labor-intensive process where wine goes through a secondary fermentation in the bottle – requiring each bottle to be rotated carefully by hand).  Do not be fooled by this sparkling wine’s blush appearance, Schramsberg’s Brut Rosé is a dry sparkling wine with candied orange and raspberry preserve aromas followed by tastes of vanilla, strawberry shortcake, lemon curd, and peach.  This is California winemaking at its be

The “Saying Goodbye to 2020 is Priceless”  Domaine Carneros Le Rêve Blanc De Blancs 2007 ($$$)
For a sparkling wine to carry a vintage (most are combinations of multiple years’ crops to preserve consistency), the region must have an exceptional year for grapes.  In 2007, Carneros experienced an excellent year with ideal warmth, producing ripe and complex wines.  Domaine Carneros Le Rêve Blanc de Blancs is a standout of this growing season.  Produced in the Méthode Champenoise (another name for méthode traditionnelle) by The Tattinger Family (of Champagne, France fame), this sparkling wine contains an intense bouquet of ginger, baked pear, citrus and a palate of white peach, green apple, and toasted almond.  Savor the balanced acidity and silky mouthfeel while welcoming a new year with new possibilities!

Goliath Consulting Group knows sparkling wine, but we also offer a full suite of bar and beverage programs.  From inventory, costing, and custom cocktail menus to staff training and safe alcohol practices, Goliath helps clients maximize their beverage programs.  Contact us at and let us know how we may be of service to your concept.  

Published by Jay Bandy

Restaurant and Franchising Professional. President of Goliath Consulting Group. A restaurant consultancy based in Atlanta, GA

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