Mother's Day in my family always involves brunch, and since we are far from alone in that holiday habit, this year's plan is to retreat from the bustling restaurant scene and cook up a feast at home. Any of the springtime picks or recommended rosés I wrote about recently could pair well at brunch, but I'm going to serve bubbly to make things a bit more festive. Here are five sparkling wines that I'd be happy to pour for mom as they're all delicious, affordable, and unique - not a classic Champagne in the bunch.
- Exotic Choice: Bagrationi 1882 Reserve Brut 2007 - This historic Georgia (the country, not the state) producer helpfully tells us that this wine is made from the "classic Chinebuli, Mtsvane and Tsitska, Kakhur and Mtsvane vines." Hrmmm. Let's set pronouncing those aside and focus on the fact that it's made in the Traditional Method, and has appealing peach and apricot aromas and a rich creaminess. I'd serve it with the main brunch dishes. ($19.99)
- Fresh Choice: Champalou Vouvray Pétillant Brut NV - You'll sniff flowers in the glass but this Traditional Method, 100% Chenin Blanc wine from France's Loire Valley is dry, crisp, and lemony on the palate. It's very versatile with food, from spicy Thai to cheese omelets. ($19.99)
- Sweet Choice: Mumm Napa Cuvée M NV - If your mom appreciates wordplay, she'll love getting a bottle of "Cuvée M" on Mother's Day. This wine is slightly sweet, with both peaches and berries in the mix along with the toast and vanilla notes typical of Champagne-style wines. It'd be nice with waffles. ($15.99+)
- Pink Choice: Nerello Mascalese Prosecco Spumante Brut Rosé NV - This Charmat method wine from Italy blends a Sicilian grape called Nerello Mascalese with Prosecco to make a dry rosé that's filled with raspberry and cherry. I like this with fruit salad. ($12.99)
- Unique Choice: Schramsberg Crémant Demi-sec 2006 - This off-dry dessert wine is made in a classic style but with an unusual grape named Flora that is a cross of Sémillon and Gewürztraminer developed at the University of California at Davis. It's spicy, floral, fruity, and sweet, and it'd be great with anything spicy, with fruit desserts, or all on its own. ($28.99+)
"On the Bottle" is a column about wine and spirits appearing every Friday on the Martha Stewart Living Radio blog. Email your boozy questions and wine quandries to firstname.lastname@example.org and they'll be answered in a future post.