#newwinethisweek – “B” is for Blanc de Blancs
The votes have been counted and your selection of Blanc de Blancs to represent the letter ‘B’ in the #newwinethisweek alphabet is a victory for both common sense and hedonism!
For those of you who don’t know, Blanc de Blanc on a bottle of bubbly means the wine has been made using white grapes only; translated into English, the phrase simply means, “white wine made from white grapes.” The majority of wines that come from that most famous fizz region Champagne are a blend of white (Chardonnay) and red (Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier) grapes; Blanc de Blancs Champagne will almost certainly be made from 100% Chardonnay (there are rare occurrences featuring the use of Pinot Blanc). If you see Blanc de Noirs then the content will be a white wine made from only black grapes (white from black, you see).
Blanc de Blancs made with Chardonnay will provide all of the characteristics you expect from a still wine made in the same region. The Blanc de Blancs of champagne are characterised by fruity aromas and flavours of apple and peach, very often with a delicious and indulgent creamy note… this is by far my favourite expression of Champagne and I am looking forward to indulging this week.
However, Blanc de Blancs isn’t constrained to Champagne alone; most of the regions that produce bubbly will have their own examples:
Jura: many of the cremants are made using Chardonnay and Savignin
Loire: plenty of fizz made with Sauvignon Blanc and Chenin Blanc
Bordeaux: fabulous froth from Sauvignon Blanc and Semillon
Burgundy: Chardonnay, Aligote and Pinot Blanc
Alsace: Pinot Blanc, Riesling, Chardonnay
There is also an increasing amount of Chardonnay being used to make Cava these days. When blended with local grapes Xarello & Parellada they produce a Spanish Blanc de Blancs, our should that be ‘Blanco des Blancos’?? And don’t forget about the wonderful fizz of England; some of the very best are 100% Chardonnay and the thought of popping a cork is making me dribble with anticipation!
There is no shortage of options this week so get on out there are find a bottle of fizz made using only white grapes; celebrate the end of January in style!