Most Americans limit their sparkling wine consumption to holidays and celebrations. But restricting yourself to Christmas and weddings means you’re missing out on a world of good wine. To increase your bubbles diet, we have two suggestions: three Crémants de Bourgogne under $30, and one of our new Ansonia sparkling stoppers (included with any 12+ bottle order of crémant or Champagne).
Our source for Crémant de Bourgogne is the Maison Louis Picamelot in Rully. The Wine Advocate’s William Kelley writes that Picamelot “produces some of the best sparkling wines in Burgundy,” and “makes a persuasive case for taking the genre more seriously.”
Philippe Chautard, the grandson of the founder, has taken the enterprise to a new level, transforming an old quarry on the edge of the town to a large underground cellar. This lets him give his crémants the time in the bottle he feels they need to develop their full complexity. We have seven wines in stock from Picamelot, but we’re suggesting three favorites today:
Picamelot Crémant Brut “Terroirs” NV ($22)
A blend of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Aligoté, this cuvée represents Burgundy as a region, drawing from grapes in the Côte d’Or, Côte Chalonnaise, and Maconnais. In the glass is smooth and drinkable, with fine bubbles and notes of apple skin and sweet butter. At $22/bot it’s a striking value — treat it like a crisp white wine and serve it as often as you like. Pair with Bourdain’s unfussy Mac and Cheese.
Picamelot Crémant Brut Rosé NV ($24)
This dry, refreshing cuvée is 100% pinot noir — it’s more floral and fruit-forward than the Terroirs, but no less delicious. It sports a bit more polish than the Terroirs, and it’s a splash more fun in the glass. Look for dry strawberry fruit and an enticing creaminess. Serve with sushi.
Picamelot Crémant Extra-Brut “Chazot” NV ($29)
This cuvée is also 100% pinot noir, but spends no time on the skins, so is a clear blanc de noirs. It spends over 3 years on the lees, which would qualify it as vintage Champagne if grown there. In the mouth it’s chewy and full, with excellent complexity and texture. It comes from a single plot near Saint-Aubin — look for an expert blend of earth and fruit, with notes of baking spice and fresh citrus.