Sparkling wine reviews, just in time for the holidays

Which camp are you in?

Do you think you should drink champagne and/or sparkling wine only on special occasions?

Or should it be enjoyed during ANY occasion?

Let’s revisit the debate when things aren’t so special…say in March, arguably the most un-special month of the year.

In the meantime, the holidays are here and over the next two weeks, we are certain that corks will be popped.

But which ones?

To help your buying decision, we tasted five sparklers, ranging in price from $8 to $28, that are all easy to find at groceries and supermarkets.


Segura Viudas Brut

We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again:  there are more great bang-for-the-buck wines coming out of Spain than any other country on the planet.

Cava is Spain’s take on sparkling wine. Segura Viudas Brut Cava is bright, refreshing, crisp and a terrific value.

You can find it for as little as $7.99 at QFC. Also available at Fred Meyer, Safeway, this Cava fooled us during our blind tasting. We thought it was one of the most expensive of the five, not the least.

Evolution Sparkling Wine

This is yet another intriguing addition to Sokol Blosser’s intriguing “Evolution” series of wines.

They throw several different grape varieties “in the blender” here. The result is an off-dry sparkler that tastes a little like super-carbonated 7 Up.  Interesting stuff.

It costs between $17-$19 and you can find it at Safeway and New Seasons.


Domaine Ste. Michelle Extra Dry

Here’s where wine terminology, especially sparkling wine terminology, gets confusing.

“Extra dry” indicates that it’s not sweet, right?  Not really.  The designation for the least-sweet sparkling wine is “brut”.  “Extra dry” is sweeter than “brut”.

Enough confusion.

Put simply, if you’re looking for a sweeter sparkling wine, this one is a great buy.  If you like your sparkling wine less sugary, Domaine Ste. Michelle Extra Dry is not for you.

When you’re out shopping, you can’t miss this one.  It’s available from between $10-$13 at Fred Meyer, Safeway, QFC, New Seasons, Market of Choice and Bale’s Thrifway.


Argyle 2015 Vintage Brut

This is a step up, both in price and in quality.

Argyle’s flagship product, the Vintage Brut is consistently pleasing.

We talk a lot about balance.  Argyle’s Vintage Brut balances acidity, fruit and effervescence so well.

Here’s another one that you will find almost everywhere.  Costco has Argyle for $20.  At Fred Meyer, Safeway, New Seasons, Market of Choice and Bale’s Thriftway, you’ll see it priced from between $23-$26.


Roederer Estate Brut

Excuse the contradiction here but year in and year out, Roederer’s “non-vintage” Brut is a winner.

Non-vintage means Roederer blended grapes from multiple vintages to create this wine.  So you can’t designate  it ’14 or ’15 or any year.  But every year, Roederer stays true to their house style which is creamy, complex and elegant.

While this sparkler comes from California, the Roederer family has been producing Champagne in France for over 200 years.  They know their stuff.

Roederer Brut runs from $24-$28 at Fred Meyer, Safeway, QFC, Bale’s Thriftway,  and Market of Choice.


Hope your holidays are happy and memorable.  Cheers!