It is around this time each year that the Walkabout Crew start getting inquiries about what to serve at staff Christmas parties, end of year BBQs and summer picnics where bubbles are considered a nice addition to the finger-food.
We have quite a bit of experience tasting, reviewing and re-tasting Australian bubbles from all over the country (our favourites come from Tasmania and Victoria though with Western Australia occasionally having a bubbly on our drink-again list) and so here are three recommendations from us this festive season, ranked by RRP.
Budget: Dalfarras 2019 Prosecco. Available at the Tahbilk cellar door, online at tahbilk.com.au or through some independent retailers. At $18.35 for non-members (membership is free) and $16.50 for members with free delivery Australia-wide on 12 bottle purchases, this is a very well priced Italian-style bubbly wine. Dry and clean it will go well with most savoury dishes.
Mid-range: Chandon 2009 Winemaker’s Selection Pinot Noir Chardonnay. RRP $59, available at the Chandon cellar door, online and through a number of retailers, this wine is AMAZING. It drinks like wines priced at three to four times the RRP and the colour in the glass needs to be seen to be believed. One of our top rated sparkling wines of all time, the length of the aftertaste on this wine is amazing. Enjoy with savoury or sweet foods.
Treat yourself: House of Arras, EJ Carr Late Disgorged 2004. This is a wine you may have trouble finding in retail stores or online as EJ Carr Wine Club members get first pick (the annual subscription to the EJ Carr club is $1200, by the way). The RRP is over $200 per bottle, but we were able to obtain some at auction for $150 per bottle recently. This is the second best sparkling wine we have rated (the best was also a House of Arras, but currently not available retail) and will hold its own against many of the best French Champagnes. Enjoy with aged cheese (truffles optional).