When I think about end of year holiday libations, the first thing that comes to mind is champagne. What better way to toast 12 months of momentous accomplishments, birthdays, anniversaries, births, or just all the hard work that we’ve done, than with a glass of bubbles from one of the most storied wine regions on the planet?
Champagne revelry need not be limited to fancy cocktail hours or midnight toasts. The way I see it, we should be opening bottles much more often (cost permitting of course) and enjoying them in more creative ways! Here are some simple, but fun, ways to incorporate these venerable bubbles into your salubrious days and nights:
Eggs: All kinds are a slam dunk with champagne—scrambled, frittata, quiche etc.) Add buttered toast, brioche, challah or savory pastry, even better. (Veuve Clicquot Brut NV, Krug Grande Cuvée or Dom Pérignon)
Potatoes: Home fries made with bacon drippings or roasted fingerlings with herbs and butter are two delicious options.
Bacon: Great on its own or mixed in with your quiche or home fries. (Veuve Clicquot Brut Rosé)
Cheese: Grate hard cheeses like parmesan or aged gouda into your eggs, crumble feta into salads, or spoon fresh ricotta onto your buttered toast. (Moët & Chandon Impérial Brut)
Hors d’oeuvres Get-togethers
Hard Cheeses like aged gouda, parmesan, Comte or Brebis (French for sheep) are a natural fit for all champagne. Try deviled eggs (Veuve Clicquot Brut NV), caviar and toast points, thinly sliced jamon & Charcuterie (Veuve Clicquot Brut Rosé NV and Moët & Chandon Impérial Brut Rosé), or oysters on the half shell (Ruinart Blanc de Blancs). For something less intimidating, I like popcorn with butter, spices, parmesan, and truffle salt, and roasted nuts just with salt or a bit of curry spice.
And of course, any of these champagnes are an ideal gift for the host of your holiday gatherings.
Post written by Alexis Brock. Alexis started her restaurant career in 2000 on the hot and smoky side of the stainless steel divide, as a line cook at Manhattan’s Gramercy Tavern. She has held New York sommelier and beverage director positions at L’Atelier in The Ritz-Carlton, Central Park, Alto and The Modern. She also spent 4 years Melbourne, Australia as Head Sommelier at the acclaimed, Circa The Prince and was named one of Australia’s leading sommeliers in Gourmet Traveller Wine Magazine’s 2008 “Best of the Best” edition.
Brock has been a Moët Hennessy Portfolio Specialist in Manhattan for the last 3 years and loves nothing more than introducing people to new ways to enjoy Champagne, outside of the traditional holiday and anniversary toasting sessions.