Bolli in the morning
I was going to save this post for Wineblogging Wednesday#53, “Wine for Breakfast”, hosted by El Bloggo Torcido of Calaveras County, CA but then I read the fine print and realized that sparkling was out. As well as rosé, dessert wine and no mixing, i.e. mimosas or other cocktail-y type drinks. Our assignment this month is to match a dry red or white wine with breakfast food. That’s going to take some pondering on my part but I’m confident I’ll come up with something.
Before my bubble was burst, so to speak, I had planned on featuring a bottle of Bollinger Special Cuvee NV for breakfast. Ok, it may be rather cliché but who doesn’t love champagne for breakfast, brunch, lunch, mid-afternoon, etc…To quote one of the grande dames of Champagne, Lily Bollinger, regarding when one should drink champagne:
“I drink it when I’m happy and when I’m sad.
Sometimes I drink it when I’m alone.
When I have company I consider it obligatory.
I trifle with it if I’m not hungry and I drink it when I am.
Otherwise I never touch it, unless I’m thirsty.”
What makes Bollinger so special? Well, 10% of it’s reserve wines have been aged in oak and the wine spends 3 years on it’s lees before disgorgement. All of which makes for a more complex non-vintage champagne then other NV’s on the market.
First off, the pop! Some purists say that the cork shouldn’t be popped but rather slowly, gently twisted off. Now, where’s the fun in that?!? I always go for the pop, to me that’s part of the magic of champagne. After the satisfying pop, then the pour, a very fluffy, frothy mousse gushing out, slowly dissipating before allowing me to continue pouring. Looking at the millions of tiny bubbles, heaps of them flying off the bottom, they are a continuous, fast moving, jet stream moving up towards the surface. The nose is slightly toffee-ish, a bit yeasty, reminds me of fresh brioche just out of the oven.
The bubbles start off with a fresh attack on the palate, fizzy, prickly and all over the place followed by baked apples, a nutty toast character with fleeting hazelnuts, and a hint of caramel. Great complexity, racing around my palate, not flabby at all, it just sweeps through your mouth leaving a lovely toffe apple finish.
We had it with salmon blinis and it was a fabulous combination, the bubbles and acidity cutting through the silky, fatty salmon but at the same time leaving us asking for more, of both the champagne and the salmon. What a great way to start off the morning. Now I have to think about what I’m going to have for Wineblogging Wednesday on the 14th of Jan.