Champagne – there is no substitute
Champagne is one of the world’s most expressive and distinctive wine styles. There simply is no substitute.
That is not to say that there aren’t many fine sparkling wines produced throughout the world. Though they do not taste the same as Champagne, and nor should they.
But when I feel like a glass of Champagne, it is because I have a yearning for its distinctive taste; which, for me, is linked to its inherent savouriness.
Even the best examples of Franciacorta, English fizz or Australian sparkling wine, all styles which I adore, will not satisfy me if I specifically feel like Champagne – because they are not Champagne.
I am disappointed if I desire a glass of Champagne and it isn’t available. Such as dining out on one’s birthday when there is no by-the-glass Champagne available.
I certainly don’t drink Champagne all the time. Not many do. Of course, it would be nice, though I suspect it would lose some of its appeal.
For many, the taste of Champagne is intrinsically linked to special occasions, such as engagements, weddings, special birthdays, anniversaries, births, work promotions, buying or selling a house, fine dining or luxury travel.
Because of this, merely opening a bottle, for no particular reason, can give a moment a celebratory tone; it can elevate the significance of a point in time.
So, every fridge needs a bottle of Champagne, in addition to fine Australian bubbly, chilled new-season riesling, a rosé, a complex chardonnay and a dessert wine. Because you don’t want to be caught unprepared if a Champagne moment strikes, or if you just need to create the illusion of one.