Through the Grapevine: 6 experts weigh in on the world of modern wine

Bubbles are the New Rosé

By Erica Rokke, Wine Buyer at Zipps Liquors

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Erica Rokke // Illustration by Bent Schoonover

Many of us in the business of selling wine are thrilled to see that rosé finally has momentum. We have been drinking these delicious pink wines for years, and done our best to convince our customers that while they might look like “blush” wines or white zin, they are a far cry from the pink juice of the ‘80s. People have caught on, and we can’t keep rosés on the shelf. Now we have hundreds of options to tantalize our thirsty customers.

So what’s our new challenge to wine drinkers? Something delicious, versatile, ranging in tastes and price point, hailing from different areas of the world, but perhaps is currently misunderstood. I believe it’s bubbles. Sparkling wine should not just be for New Year’s Eve or to mix with orange juice for Sunday morning mimosas. There is a sparkling wine at every price point to go along with every time of day and any meal.

Take Thanksgiving for example. You’ve probably heard that riesling and pinot noir are the wines for that holiday. And yes, they are indeed versatile wines that can go with a wide range of flavors, which is why they’re frequently suggested. I would argue that sparkling wine is just as versatile, if not even more so.

Sparkling wine is perfect for those hard-to-pair meals that have lots of spice or contrasting flavors because of their high acid and carbonation. You could try a prosecco from Italy that’s soft and fruity with fresh berries from the farmers market. If you’re having grilled pork chops, a fruity sparkling red like Gamay or lambrusco (which can be dry!) would be perfect on a warm day. A crémant from the Loire Valley is a great French sparkler that’s half the cost of Champagne and would be delicious with creamy Brie. If you’re just having a snack of nuts, olives, and charcuterie try a dry and toasty Spanish cava, a wine meant for tapas. There are so many to choose from that every day can be a celebration.

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