Traditionally light in body and bone dry, Champagne is considered a go-to aperitif – something to sip before the white and red wines are rolled out with dinner. Whilst this may be true of the more classic styles of Champagne, many of the grower Champagnes coming out of the cellars are far bigger and bolder or just too interesting to quaff on their own. As such, Champagne is now being recognised as one of the most versatile 'food wines' on the market.
At Sip we're fortunate to be endowed with such a broad range of styles that there is something to sit alongside almost any dish and, with Valentine's Day around the corner, there seemed no better time to marry a handful of our favourite bottles with some classic dishes.
Smoked Salmon & Cream Cheese
If you're looking to start the day with a memorable romantic breakfast then why not pair it up with a beautiful Champagne?
Hugues Godme Blanc de Blancs is a lovely example of the richer and rounder style of Chardonnay that can be produced in the Montagne de Reims. There is enough body and buttery play to hold it's own with this dish but with plenty of crisp energy to cut through the fat.
Is there a better dish for Valentine's Day than this quintessential aphrodisiac? Pair them with a steely Chardonnay to complement that beautiful fresh, seaside salinity.
Pertois Lebrun L'Extravertie is fabulous choice, displaying hints of cuttlefish and chartreuse alongside the classic chalky minerality and zest of Côte de Blancs Chardonnay.
If you're looking to play it safe and easy with a little snacking plate of cheese, crackers and cold cuts, then why not liven it up with an exciting Champagne?
Remi Leroy Saignee Les Crots is the perfect option, with just enough depth to handle the meat, and plenty of fruit to balance the cheese. It can even hold its own with a little spice if you're planning anything more exotic.
If you're looking to test your culinary skills this year, then make sure you have something worthwhile to toast your success.
Georges Remy Le Mont de Tauxieres 2016 is an absolute blockbuster of a wine. 50/50 Pinot Noir/Chardonnay, 100% oak vinified, close your eyes and you could be drinking a red Burgundy! There is plenty of body and weight to stand up to the steak, but with the freshness to cut through the buttery pastry and mushrooms.
Strawberries & Cream
Strawberries and Champagne are a classic combo, but choose something too dry and you'll lose the other notes of the wine.
Pierre Legras Monographie Extra Dry, despite the name, is actually the sweetest wine in our entire collection with 14g/ltr dosage. Whilst not 'sweet' it has enough sugar to work with the fruit.