Champagne Aubry Brut Jouy-les-Reims Premier Cru ($33.99)
This grower Champagne from brothers Pierre and Philippe Aubry is a clear golden color, with a frothy mousse that falls back fairly fast, leaving a persistent bubble stream. Good fresh-apple aromas with hints of cocoa and toast, pleasant and complex. Very dry and tart, crisp apples and an impression of bitterness in the finish, particularly when the wine is cold; as it warms in the glass, the bitter character softens and the wine gains a more full-bodied texture. Disgorged in May 2006, it's an unusual blend, featuring 60 percent of the relatively uncommon Pinot Meunier grape with 20 percent each Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. I like it. US Importer: Michael Skurnik Wines, Manhasset, N.Y.; a Terry Theise Estate Selection. (Dec 27, 2007)

FOOD MATCH: Although it's fine for sipping by itself as a New Year's toast or aperitif, this quality Champagne with its crisp acidity and full body will work well with a broad range of dishes at the dinner table, from omelets to shellfish, veal, poultry or pork.



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