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Chris Hill's Christmas Fizz!

Friday, 7 December 2007

Today we will be looking at Christmas fizz. From the cheap and cheerful Cava to the more expensive champagnes.

1.
Name
   Cordon Negro Dry

Producer  Freixenet
Vintage  N/A
Country & Region Spain, Penedes
Grape Varieties 40% Parellada / 35% Macabeo / 25% Xarel-lo

Tasting Notes
Clean and light on the palate with an elegant and long length. Loaded with sweet apple and apricot aromas along with peach, melon and candied citrus flavors

Retail Price  €15.99

Where to Buy   Off Licences and supermarkets nationwide

2.
Name
   Prossecco Valdobbiadene

Producer  Bisol
Vintage  N/A
Country & Region Italy, Valdobbiadene
Grape Varieties Prossecco.

Tasting Notes
A fantastic rich creaminess abounds with lots of peach fruit flavours in the mouth that finishes on an extremely elegant citrus note.

Very impressive minerality and nuttiness to this that complements the ripe pear and apple fruit.  Lovely zesty acidity and an extremely good mousse.  Fruit intensity is very persistent to the finish.

This is a lovely Prosecco of brilliant, straw yellow color and a myriad of tiny bubbles that build a most gentle mousse in your mouth. It possesses a fresh, intense bouquet of wild flowers and characteristic scents of green apple. A perfect drink for hot summer days.

Food Matches 
As an aperitif or as an accompaniment for light foods

Interesting Stories 
This wine is obtained from selected grapes grown on the hills around Valdobbiadene at an average altitude of 250 meters (820 ft.). Cold maceration, with the skins in contact overnight with the must at a low temperature, assures remarkable extraction of varietal aromas that exalt the bouquet, as well as fruity and sapid flavors.

Retail Price  
€17.00

Where to Buy    
Independent off licenses nationwide.

3.
Name
   Cordon Negro Medium Dry

Producer  Freixenet
Vintage  N/A
Country & Region Spain, Penedes
Grape Varieties 40% Parellada / 35% Macabeo / 25% Xarel-lo

Tasting Notes 
A light Cava appreciated for its intense freshness.

The high content of the Parellada grape coupled with fermentation at a controlled temperature of 12șC produces fine, intense and fruity aromas. Brilliant pale yellow in colour. Fine and persistent mousse. Clean and light on the palate with an elegant and long length.

Retail Price  €15.99

Where to Buy    Supermarkets and Off Licenses Nationwide

4.
Name
                         Billecart Salmon Brut Reserve NV

Producer                   Billecart-Salmon
Vintage                      Non-Vintage
Country & Region    France/Champagne
Grape Varieties        Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier

Tasting Notes         
The wine appears straw yellow with slowly rising bubbles and a lasting mousse, the nose displays floral notes and some aromas of ripe pear while the palate is rich, powerful and fresh.

Food Matches         
Billecart-Salmon NV is a perfect partner throughout the day and can be consumed with a wide variety of dishes.  It is best served at 8degrees centigrade and can be laid down for up to 10 years

Interesting Stories  
Billecart-Salmon was created in 1818 by Nicholas Francois Billecart and his wife Elisabeth Salmon.  Since then it has remained in the family and is now run by the seventh generation of the family.  The house owns 30 hectares of vines and buys in the fruit of another 140 hectares from growers contracted to produce wines to Billecart specifications.

Retail Price              €45 - €49

Where to Buy          Independent off licences and wine shops nationwide.

5.
Name
   Champagne Taittinger Prestige Rose

Producer  Champagne Taittinger
Vintage                       NV
Country & Region Reims, France
Grape Varieties Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier

Tasting Notes
The colour, brilliant pink, is shimmering and intense. The bubbles are fine and the mousse persistent.The nose, satisfyingly intense, is both fresh and young. It gives off aromas of red fruit (freshly crushed wild raspberry, cherry and blackcurrant).On the palate; this is a velvety wine of fine balance, and body - a subtle wine with flavours of fresh fruit.  In all, a very pleasing wine of balance and youth.

Food Matches
A delicious accompaniment to fruit desserts (fruit tart, fruit salad) and also great with Asian food

Interesting Stories  
Champagne Taittinger is one of the last grande marque houses to still be run by the family.  Its current president is Pierre-Emmanuel Taittinger

Retail Price  €65 per bottle

Where to Buy Independent off liceneses nationwide


"Drink only in moderation: the Afternoon Show and its producers advocate a balanced and responsible attitude to alcohol"

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