Champagne Egly-Ouriet Brut Tradition ($30.99)
Clear light gold; a frothy mousse falls back fast, followed by streams of tiny, persistent bubbles. Exceptionally prickly on the nose and tongue, suggesting a high level of carbonation. Bold red-fruit scents, currants and berries, present a tasty but rather unusual aroma profile for a Champagne. Flavors are mouth-filling, tart and complex, abundant fruit that follows the nose. Exceptionally complex for a non-vintage Champagne, it's made from fruit grown in two "Grand Cru" villages: Ambonnay and Bouzy. US Importer: Vintner Select, Cincinnati; Michael Skurnik, Syosset, N.Y., North Berkeley Wine Merchant, Berkeley, Calif., and other regional importers. (Dec 22, 2002)

FOOD MATCH: A fine, if cross-ethnic, match with an Italian classic, linguine with white clam sauce.

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