2006 Chandon Yountville Vintage Brut

Vintage Bubbly From The Heart Of Napa

We’re doing family dinners with my wife’s family on Sundays these days. It’s a good time, as they’re fun people and the food is almost embarrassingly good. Also fun is my in-laws' penchant for, and constant supply of, California sparkling wine.

This last Sunday we got together, ate some fantastic Asian-inspired chicken, and watched Team USA take it to the home-ice-advantaged Canadians in Olympic Ice Hockey. Was a great game either way, was made even better by Uncle Sam’s 5-3 triumph. We also drank some bubbly, including this vintage brut from one of Napa’s mainstay sparkling producers.

The wine is a pale yellow in the glass, and the bubbles are noticeably slow-moving. It’s like they deliberately stalk the top of the glass. The nose is yeasty and light, with a hint of sour apple.

The 2006 Yountville Brut is a light-bodied wine, sharp, with a medium-length finish that neither disappoints nor overwhelms. It tastes a bit of lemon, a bit more of sour (think Granny Smith) apple, and even more of sourdough bread. It’s not the crispest or cleanest brut I’ve had, the yeastiness weighs it down some, but it’s a very enjoyable drink.

An excellent wine for celebrating a major national hockey victory—or just another great Sunday with family.

Verdict: 89/100

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