Weekend Wine: New Year's Celebration Wines

These wines should be available almost anywhere you shop

courtesy of Taittinger

We always try to send you to the greatest wines at the lowest prices. Sometimes that takes a bit of shopping or phone time to accomplish, so, for the New Year, we’re going to offer you great wine and time. Because these wines should be available almost anywhere you shop.

You can you get more distinctive wines, often with limited distribution, if you have a connection with a wine salesperson that you know and trust But the vast majority of the wine-consuming public just wants to rush in, grab a bottle, then head home to drink it that night. If that describes you, here are a few wines to light your life without having to do much shopping.

Taittinger Brut Réserve is a premium brand of Champagne. The Taittinger family has overseen this brand's rise in both fame and quality for nearly a century, and this wine provides a wonderful opportunity to taste what is so special about real Champagne. This year, it seems the family has decided to take a chunk of market share by offering the wine at sale prices. You can find the Brut Réserve anywhere from $42 to $57 so it might pay to call at least a couple of places. (As of publication, H-E-B had the lowest price in the sale category, but that might change.)

America produces some stunning sparkling wines, and one of the best is J Vineyards & Winery. It was founded by Judy Jordan of the famous Jordan wine-producing family. Six years ago, Gallo bought it and many of us feared a quality drop. Luckily, the wine has maintained its high standards, and J Cuvée 20 Brut is still one of America’s best sparklers. It usually runs about $34.

For those of us that aim for the sub-$10 price range, just look for the ubiquitous black bottle from Freixenet (usually $9-$10). Nouveau wine snobs usually feel only antipathy to this wine, but that is their loss. Instead, pay attention to the fruity, toasty aromas and smile while enjoying a delicious sip that costs about 15% of an average Champagne.

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Champagne, Tattinger, J Vineyards, Freixenet, Brut Reserve


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