Bring on the Bubbly!

New Year’s Eve is quickly approaching and friends around the world are finalizing their plans for the end of 2009. Seems like only yesterday we were all freaking out about Y2K and suddenly it’s the next decade. Scary.

As you may know, most folks don’t actually drink champagne in the traditional sense on New Year’s – they’re usually drinking sparkling wine. Here’s a good FAQ that explains the difference.

I’m by no means a champagne snob, but I do find that most people are woefully confused when it comes time to pick out an appropriate bubbly for a party. Champagne (or sparkling wine) is one of my favorite housewarming gifts and something I’ll drink all year long, but I especially look forward to enjoying it on New Year’s.

Without further ado, here’s a quick guide to all my favorite sparkling wines, in a range of prices. Because it’s not always champagne wishes and caviar dreams. Sometimes it’s just delicious sparkling wine for $20 a bottle.

The Real Deal: French Champagne

Veuve Clicquot

I’ve tried the similarly priced Perrier Jouet and I think this champagne blows it out of the water. At approximately $50 a bottle, it’s not exactly everyday stuff, but Veuve Clicquot is worth every penny. Delightfully dry, it tastes crisp on your tongue without ever being too sweet. If you’re looking for a nice gift for a party, or you’re celebrating something special, this is hands down the best champagne I’ve had.

Over the Boarder: Italian Sparkling Wine


Our wine guy back in DC served this at his wedding. Contrary to popular belief, Ferrari is not in anyway affiliated with the automaker. Ferrari retails for only about $20 a bottle, which makes it a fantastic choice for your New Year’s guests. Of all the “imposters,” Ferrari tastes the most to me like actual champagne with none of the extra sweetness you find in the next two options.

You can find this prosecco for less than $20 at some retailers this time of year. This is my go-to choice for mimosas since it’s slightly sweeter than other options. I love bringing a bottle of this to girls night dinners for an aperitif.

Cava de Espana


In Spain, they all drink Cristalino like it’s going out of style, which makes sense since it’s only about 3 euro there. You can find this cava in America for less than $10, which makes it ideal for a big champagne toast with all your friends. People are always shocked when I tell them how inexpensive this bubbly is, because it sure doesn’t taste like it. Mix it with orange juice, Cointreau, and a little agave nectar to make Agua de Valencia.

I was smiling from ear to ear yesterday when I received this award from Gena. The idea is to name seven random things about yourself and pass it on to seven other worthy bloggers. It means so much especially to receive it from Gena, since her blog was part of my impetus to start this one. Sadly, this is probably the most un-Gena like post of all time, so sorry for that unfortunate coincidence. Thanks again, Gena 🙂 Obviously, I will be needing your cleanse after this New Year’s.

1. I can’t snap or whistle. In the sorority, we really did “snaps” just like Elle Woods and I had to fake it.

2. Up until last Christmas, I couldn’t swim. I mean, I could tread water and save my life, but I couldn’t get the breathing down for laps. G gave me lessons as a gift and now I practice whenever I get the chance.

3. I’ve been a blonde, brunette, and a redhead. People without question treat you differently and there is some truth to the saying, “blondes have more fun.”

4. I H-A-T-E cleaning my apartment. But I love inviting people over. Sometimes I’m so embarrassed about the state of my apt I make the people I invited over wait in the hallway while I run in and throw everything in my bedroom. True story.

5. Top 5 favorite foods (no order): Lentils, Avocados, Cucumbers, Corn Tortillas, and French fries (any kind, any way, any day)

6. Foods I would like to banish off the face of the earth: Rye bread, Beans, Peas

7. Favorite holiday movie: The Nightmare Before Christmas. Who am I kidding, fav movie of all time. I don’t own it, though, since I originally bought it on VHS. Makes me feel old.

And the pumpkin king picks these 7 ladies to receive the Let Them Eat Lentils beautiful blogger award:

1. LW

2. Amber

3. Anna

4. Jess

5. Erica America

6. Holly

7. My mom!!

RIP Brittany Murphy. Check out Amber’s beautiful post here.

10 responses to “Bring on the Bubbly!

  1. OMG!! Well first and foremost … I need to follow your mom’s blog!!!! LOL and OMG Thank you! How cool Gena nominated you!! And thank you! I will post tomorrow and Glad you liked the Brittany picture post! OK can I use any more exclamation points? wow.
    Ok I am SOO with you on the Champagne thing. I will be celebrating my New Years with sparking wine that I picked up in Napa, but I agree Veuve Clicquot is my go to affordable champagne. I LOVE the Jessica Simpson Newlyweds episode when they debate “Champagne/Sparking Wine” lol

  2. Ha, no worries about it being un-Gena! I can appreciate the lure of bubbly on New Year’s 🙂

    Glad we share a fave top five food in the avocados!!!

  3. I would love to banish Peas from the earth too. Ick!

  4. I think you and Jessie are trying to start a fight 🙂

    I’ve never seen Nightmare Before Christmas!!!

  5. I love all your favorite foods but I love peas too! Interesting facts, thanks for sharing!

  6. Lynn at The Actors Diet

    y2k does feel like yesterday. i think that’s the last time i drank champagne!

  7. Why thank you!!! I will get started on this post right away!

    I can’t whistle or snap either, but I guess I can’t steal your number one item 🙂

    Thanks for the champagne tutorial. I’ve always wanted to be one fo those people who drinks champagne year-round. So glamorous! Unfortunately, my champagne consumption is usually limited to holidays and very special occasions. Maybe that should be my New Year’s resolution– drink more champagne 🙂

  8. Pingback: Vegan Grocery Shop « Let Them Eat Lentils

  9. Pingback: Country Club Crab Cakes « Let Them Eat Lentils

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