Green Point 1994 Brut ($22.99)
Made from the traditional Champagne cuvé of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier, it's a clear straw color with a lasting stream of tiny bubbles. Delicious aromas of apples and pears add a tasty whiff of milk chocolate. Rich and creamy on the palate, tart apples dominate a tart, full-bodied flavor that lasts into a long, clean finish. Priced competitively with non-vintage Champagnes, it's a credible alternative to the French and significantly better than the Napa Chandon, or for that matter, than any California sparkler I've tried. U.S. importer: Old Bridge Cellars, San Francisco. (Dec. 1, 1999)
FOOD MATCH: Works surprisingly well with a hearty but mildly spiced chicken tortilla soup.
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