Bubbly isn’t just for popping on New Year’s Eve. That because champagne, and all of its methodically made kin, has become a stateside staple and less of a fussy ritual. For good reason: it’s downright delicious, no matter how you pour it.
And the flute runneth over, thanks to our home state’s ability to grow the traditional French vinifera and producer affinity for the vine’s yeasty yield. In our current issue, Jim Clarke remembers a time before the boom, when the oldest winery in the country, Pleasant Valley, was one of the only wineries fermenting their juice. Now, a whole slew of cellars are paying homage to this delicious craft, from yeasty, single grape varieties to luscious, rosy blends. In many ways, the tiny bubbles are growing big.
Karen Ulrich took notice, and began exploring the East End’s sparkle-boom in 2010, whereby Lenz, Lieb Family Cellars, Wölffer Estate and numerous other effervescence enthusiasts had begun embracing the time-consuming, fragile double-fermentation process — all in the name of loving the bubble, as Eileen Duffy wrote, and anticipating the rise of sparkling wine to daily drink. Boy, was that right.