Pop culture: The 20 best bubblies to open this New Year

Posted on Dec 30, 2018

Mirror, mirror on the wall – who’s the best sparkling maker of them all?

Not you, Tasmania. Well, not this year anyway.

The Apple Isle’s sparkling crown slipped in 2018 as Victorian labels surged on the wine show circuit to dominate our rankings. Garden State labels claimed five of the top six sparkling whites in our rankings this year.

Sparkling white, including prosecco, is the biggest subset of Australia’s bubbly category. It accounts for 36 of the top 50 fizzies. Of these, Victoria accounted for half while Tasmania laid claim to 10.

These figures challenge the growing presumption that the Taswegians have a mortgage on Australian sparkling. It has been suggested that the islanders’ long, cool ripening periods give them an advantage in producing fruit that balances the required acidity with greater texture than their mainland counterparts. However the show results don’t appear to bear this theory out so much.

The epicentre of the Big Island’s revival this year is the Yarra Valley. This makes sense given that region’s excellence in producing the two most common sparkling grapes – chardonnay and pinot noir. Perhaps that’s why one of the world’s biggest bubbly makers, Moet & Chandon, planted its flag in the Valley all the way back in 1986 with Domaine Chandon.

Domaine Chandon’s local offerings have been a popular if not highly acclaimed part of the Australia’s fizzy scene ever since. However quality seems to have assumed more importance lately with two of the stable’s labels figuring in our Top Six this year.

Knocking the top off a bottle of bubbles is Australia’s favourite way to celebrate. Here are the top 20 local labels to help you see in the New Year in style:

1 Domaine Chandon Whitlands Blanc De Blanc 2013
2 Coldstream Hills Sparkling Pinot Noir Chardonnay 2014
3 Seppelt Salinger Sparkling Cuvee 2013
4 Arras Grand Vintage 2008
5 Blue Pyrenees Midnight Cuvee 2014
6 Domaine Chandon Blanc de Blancs 2013
7 Pirie Vintage Sparkling 2011
8 Mandala Yarra Valley Blanc de Blancs 2015
9 Trentham “The Family ” Prosecco NV
10 Arras Brut Elite Cuvee 1401 NV
11 Brown Brothers Sparkling Pinot Noir Chardonnay Pinot Meunier NV
12 Wicks Estate Pamela Chardonnay Pinot Noir 2013
13 Printhie Swift Vintage Chardonnay, Pinot Noir 2013
14 Printhie Swift Cuvee NV
15 Taltarni Blanc de Blancs 2015
16 Pirie NV
17 Sidewood Sparkling NV
18 Blue Pyrenees Vintage Brut 2013
19 Heemskerk Chardonnay Pinot Noir 2013
20 Brown Brothers Patricia Sparkling Pinot Noir Chardonnay 2011



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