There is no sweeter sound on New Year’s Eve—or any eve, for that matter—than the sound of a pent-up cork finally achieving blissful freedom. The release of carbon dioxide into a rising, mesmerizing swirl of bubbles is a universally chic and distinctly tasteful way to celebrate just about any occasion. In case you find yourself in a wine store rut, we’ve assembled an array of intriguing Champagnes and sparkling wines to pop away 2017 and welcome in 2018!
The 200-year-old distinctive yellow label of Veuve Clicquot’s standard Brut is immediately recognizable and an enduring symbol of the Champagne house’s success and longevity. Veuve Clicquot continues its cuvée excellence with La Grande Dame 2006 (SRP $150+). An exclusive blend of eight classic Grand Crus, comprising 53 percent Pinot Noir and 47 percent Chardonnay, it’s a feast for the senses both on the nose and in the mouth, with a crisp, silky texture and a fresh, generous endnote. veuveclicquot.com
Throughout the history of Champagne, wines that were blended for greater sweetness were described as “rich,” and Veuve Clicquot has propelled this tradition into the contemporary era with its Rich (SRP $65) and Rich Rosé (SRP $65) offerings, created expressly for mixology. Simply place ice cubes in a large wine glass, add one key ingredient (like fruit, tea, or an herb) for a unique twist, finish with the bubbly Rich, and voila: heaven in a glass. Plus, the bottle glows in the dark for extra festive flair. veuveclicquot.com
Looking to make an impression? The Moët Impérial Golden Sparkle Jeroboam (SRP $450) will do just that. Weighing in at three liters (the equivalent of four standard bottles), it delivers a party-sized amount of Moët & Chandon’s iconic Brut Impérial, known for its bright fruitiness, seductive palate, and elegant maturity. This holiday show-stopper is all about the math: three grapes, four bottles, endless enjoyment. moet.com
It’s hard to improve on a classic like the currently available 2006 Vintage, but Dom Pérignon’s Plénitude Deuxieme (SRP $395.95)—or P2 for short—manages to vibrate on an ultra-high level. As the story goes, the year 1998 was marked by the spectacular burning of grapes caused by record high temperatures in August followed by exceptional rainfall in September. These grapes already made an appearance in the First Plénitude released in 2005. Now, invigorated by additional years in the cellars, P2 transcends the vintage’s original potential. domperignon.com
Engraved with a thousand delicate dimples and inspired by the luster of black pearls, Champagne Nicolas Feuillatte’s Palmes d’Or 2006 Brut Vintage (SRP $153-$200) is the self-professed “diva” of Champagnes. Aged for a minimum of nine years, this award-winner is complex and distinguished, expressing the vast diversity of the Champagne region’s soils. On the nose, it is what the house calls “tenderly zingy.” On the palate, its acidity and low sweetness levels make for optimum balance and great structure. The partner 2006 Rosé Vintage combines powerful Pinot Noir from Bouzy with more subtle Pinot from Riceys. nicolas-feuillatte.com