Summer is the season for sparkling wine and like a rose, Champagne by any other name, will still taste just as sweet. Which is useful to know as sparkling wines made anywhere outside the region of Champagne can not legally bear the name, but can be equally superb.
In two parts I’m selecting my first bubbles, both are sparking examples of local wine making brilliance and at a fraction. Each from producers that in make wines that are a match for Champagne, but with a fresh and enervating kiwi edge to their bubbly brilliance.
Let’s start with the originator, Daniel Le Brun, the most famous name in NZ bubbles. Daniel makes wine solely under his family’s own label No.1 Family Estate in Marlborough with a reputation widely and rightly known, for making consistently excellent sparkling wines.
No.1 Family Estate make only sparkling wine, unique amongst local producers and and this focus shows in their truly world-class wines. Their most popular wine No8 (RRP $32), should be always on hand, a great value, top class sparkling made from the traditional Champagne grapes of Chardonnay, Pinot Meunier and Pinot Noir it as consistent as a child’s laugh on xmas morning.
So often the occasion that call for bubbles also ask for elegance and here is my favourite and first pick every time, a wine of which I am a particular fan, the No1 (RRP $43), made entirely of Chardonnay ( what the french call blanc de blanc) this is at once soft and structured, think Audrey Hepburn’s cheekbones, No1 an elegant and luxurious wine. No1 possesses a refined and gentle charm to carry a richly flavoursome sparkling that is on my must drink list of kiwi wines.
These are wines with heritage, past and future. Son of a Champagne family Daniel has made a huge contribution to NZ and begun a generational legacy here in his adopted homeland. A keen hunter and outdoorsman Daniel fell in love with NZ and in with a beautiful part of NZ called, Adele, who he made his wife. Together Daniel and Adele are, No.1 Family Estate. It is well worth being on their newsletter and up to date on their offerings because special release cuvee are a feature of their winemkaing. Small production, high quality and unusual wines that never make the retail shelf are offered only to their fans and supporters, become one.