Praise a high-quality sparkling wine by comparing it to Champagne and you risk sounding trite. That said, I will shamefully do just that and admit this bottle of Royal Seyssel had me Royally fooled into thinking I was enjoying a very pricey, very prestigious, vintage Champagne. Its méthode is the same as that of Champagne, though Royal Seyssel offers a unique blend of indigenous Altesse and Molette, and ages three years sur lattes. One sip had me curiously nostalgic for a traditional French breakfast tartine I once enjoyed, whose components of toasty baguette, salted butter, and glossy quince jelly were on full display and living harmoniously in my glass. I wanted the experience to never end.
Still white wines, from the aptly named Rhône-Alps region, dynamically represent their parent climates: Rhône-like with their warm, sun-kissed expression of stone fruits, and Alp-like with their crystalline purity and cooling limestone minerality. Les Abymes, 100% Jacquère, is the most weightless and delicate expression of this combination I’ve ever tasted. They say “what grows together goes together,” but I paired Les Abymes with a very un-Savoyard and rather Italian spaghetti al limone, which felt as simple and celestial as pairings come.
Looking for the opulence of a southern white wine? Travel no further than Chignin, where the Quenard family bottles a Roussanne (dubbed Bergeron in these parts) that will exceed your wildest expectations. Le Grand Rebossan has all the makings of an age-worthy cuvée—old vines from privileged parcels, steep limestone slopes, and a year in neutral oak foudre—so consider cellaring a few bottles. Otherwise, pair this slightly honeyed, walnutty white with an earthy Tome des Bauges or a chickpea tagine with apricots, roasted carrots, and toasted cumin.
Drinking distilled spirits, beer, coolers, wine and other alcoholic beverages may increase cancer risk, and, during pregnancy, can cause birth defects. For more information go to www.P65Warnings.ca.gov/alcohol
Many food and beverage cans have linings containing bisphenol A (BPA), a chemical known to cause harm to the female reproductive system. Jar lids and bottle caps may also contain BPA. You can be exposed to BPA when you consume foods or beverages packaged in these containers. For more information, go to www.P65Warnings.ca.gov/bpa