LARCHMONT, N.Y. -- Ready to toast 2014 and ring in 2015 but not sure what sort of bubbly is best?
Jake Lambertson, wine buyer and manager at Post Wine and Spirits in Larchmont, said one of his favorite champagnes is Philippe Prie. At $35 a bottle, it's a much better deal than the ever-popular Veuve Cliquot, which sells for nearly $90.
Philippe Prie is "way more complex than Veuve Cliquot,'' and goes well with shrimp, crab or lobster meals, he said.
Sommelier Ned Towle of Hastings-on-Hudson, founder of Westchester Wine School which holds classes in White Plains and Manhattan, gave the Daily Voice some additional sparkling suggestions:
Dom Ruinart Blanc de Blancs, either the vintage or non vintage varieties, is "an outstanding champagne and features both delicacy and finesse," said Towle. It ranges from $70 to $120 per bottle.
He's also big on Gruet. Grown in New Mexico by a French family, this slightly fruity medium to full body wine is less on the acidity and yeast side like champagne and more on the fruit and mineral side, and is consistently good. It costs about $25 a bottle.
Banfi Winery Rosa Regale 2012 is another Towle pick. "Sparkling wines are festive but rose sparkling wines are extra festive," he said. "This is an an off dry sparkling wine meaning there is some sweetness to it." It sells for $15 per bottle.
Another crowd-pleaser: Gruet Brut NV ($15), sold as a rosé or a "Blanc de Noirs," which means it is made of Pinot Noir grapes.
Cavas from Spain and Proseccos from Italy are always popular; he likes Moscato d'Asti from Italy. He's also quite fond of La Spinetta Moscato d'Asti Bricco Quaglia, a crisp vintage (get the 2013 vintage) that's full of fruit flowers and perfume. "It's not a food wine," he warned, "But an apéritif that is knock-your-socks-off aromatic!" Expect to pay about $16.
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