Wines with bubbles

Alternative ways to add fizz to your festivities, as selected by the sommelier Sandia Chang

I often find myself humming the lyrics to a song by the legendary American musician Don Ho: “Tiny bubbles / In the wine / Make me happy / Make me feel fine”. There are some amazing alternative wines with bubbles out there – so, this festive season, instead of bringing a bottle of champagne, prosecco or cava to the many Christmas parties, let’s dare to be different…

Crémant is a sparkling wine produced in regions of France outside of Champagne, such as Burgundy, Jura, Alsace and Loire. Sekt comes from Germany or Austria, Franciacorta from Italy, and there are strong competitors for champagne coming from both the UK and the US. Alternatively, you could go for a ‘pét nat’: short for ‘pétillant naturel’, it’s a naturally made wine with lower alcohol and no sugar or preservatives added, whose bubbles are created during the first fermentation, making them softer.

Domaine Pierre Frick, Crémant d’Alsace, Pinot Blanc

Pierre Frick has been farming biodynamically in Alsace since 1981, dedicating himself to improving and maintaining the health of his vines in order to produce a wine that is healthy and as natural as possible. This wine is 50 per cent Pinot Blanc and 50 per cent Riesling, two essential Alsatian grapes blended together. Made using the traditional Champagne method, this wine expresses a nose of delicate yellow floral aromas and a palate full of fresh, fruity apricots and peaches. Email contact@pierrefrick.com for UK stockist details.

Catherine et Pierre Breton, Moustillant “La Dilettante” Blanc, Vouvray, Loire Valley

These are the pioneers of pét nat. Naturally produced, this wine is made entirely of Chenin Blanc, and expresses delicate aromas of fresh oranges and apricot skins. The palate is fresh, with delicate bubbles that refresh and dance on the tip of your tongue. This is definitely a thirst-quencher, and appropriate for all occasions and food. £17.50, Vinvm.

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