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  • Writer's pictureKate Simpson

Bubbles & Sparkles

Updated: Nov 30, 2022

Our last tasting of the year is a range of eleven old and new world sparkling wines and champagnes (yes, eleven!). A different format for this tasting; with different tables offering up the 5 champagnes and 6 sparkling wines on the list. Armed with our ‘wine passports’ we made our way round the beautiful Wedgewood Room at the Faculty Club tasting the different bubbles on offer.

This side-by-side tasting meant that you could not only compare champagnes to find your favourites, but really see what the taste and bubble differences are between the Champagne region and the Old and New Worlds for sparkling wines.

There was a blind-tasting element to the evening to see if our members could tell whether either Wine A or Wine B was from Champagne or not, and whether they could identify which from our tasting notes. Kim Berdusco and Sam Fritz-Tate took us through some broad tasting profiles to help distinguish and some idea of the different blend of grapes and the effect they would have on the different wines we were going to taste.

Chardonnay often gives the wine acidity and structure. Pinot Noir gives the wine a full-bodied and fruity profile. Pinot Meunier has early maturity and gives the wine some fruitiness.

Sam also told us to look out for the following as we explored the tables over the next hour or so: (1) great minerality, (2) great fruit, (3) any nuttiness, (4) a long finish, and (5) how the bubbles are integrated into the taste of the wine.

Did you guess that both Wines A and B were champagne? And one of them a Bollinger too?! Were you convinced that champagne is in a class of its own? Or did you find any of the sparkling wines were almost indistinguishable from a fine champagne? Did you find the mix of grapes made a difference to the wines that ended up being amongst your favourites of the evening?

Here are the tasting notes that accompanied our 'wine passports' for the eleven bubbles and sparkles that we tasted:

Download PDF • 212KB

There were definitely a few surprises in my journey around the room as I tasted these eleven sparkles and bubbles. It was a busy evening with a large number of members making it to this popular joint TVC and Wine Tasters of Toronto event; and the last of the season!

We hope your holiday period is accompanied by your favourite wines, whether red, white or sparkling.

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