My F&W
quick save (...)

Shellfish and Champagne

Buttery gratinéed shrimp, mussels and clams are a fabulous start to a New Year's—especially since they pair so beautifully with Champagne.

Perfect wine match 
Most everyone is happy to have a glass of sparkling wine along with a piece of cheese or a bit of caviar. But pour a glass with dinner and the same people may express surprise: Isn't Champagne an aperitif? The fact is, good bubbly is an adept partner with many different kinds of foods. Its higher acidity makes it a particularly refreshing match with rich dishes like this shellfish gratin. Furthermore, the best Champagnes and California sparkling wines—particularly bruts, the driest blends of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir—are full-bodied enough to harmonize with the gratin's mustard flavors. A prime example is the Veuve Clicquot Yellow Label Brut Nonvintage ($45), which happens to be one of the most popular Champagnes in the world. And with good reason: It's not often that you find so much grace and complexity in a nonvintage Champagne—and its crisp citrus notes and lush yeastiness make it a natural with the gratin. If you prefer the riper, juicier California style, try the 1996 Iron Horse Classic Vintage Brut ($28). With its spicy apple and caramel aromas and flavors, it offers world-class depth at a good price. 

--Tim Fish

Published January 2002
YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

Comments

Add A Comment

    Add a Comment

    See our terms
    You must be logged in to comment. or
    advertisement
    You might also like
    advertisement
    The Dish
    Receive delicious recipes and smart wine advice 4x per week in this e-newsletter.
    The Wine List Weekly pairing plus best bottles to buy.
    F&W Daily One sensational dish served fresh every day.

    Tune in on Wednesdays at 10PM ET for Top Chef: Boston, the 12th season of Bravo's Emmy-Award winning, hit reality series.

    Join celebrity chefs, renowned winemakers and epicurean insiders at the culinary world's most spectacular weekend, the FOOD & WINE Classic in Aspen, June 19-21.