The Barefoot Bubbly Brut Cuvée is a refreshing sparkling wine that I enjoyed recently while relaxing on a warm summers day. This dry (brut) bubbly is made using 100% Chardonnay grapes, and the characteristics of the Chardonnay grape variety were prevalent. This wine had aromas of apples, nectarines and tropical fruit, and on the palate were flavors of green apples, nectarines, mangoes, and kiwi. For an inexpensive sparkling wine it had a nice crispness, and was quite refreshing.
Toad Hollow Vineyards is based in Healdsburg, Sonoma County. In 1995 they began to import wines that were produced in France, and from that they have two sparkling wines, and three still wines in their portfolio. The Toad Hollow “Methode Ancestrale” Risqué Sparkling Wine is one of these wines that is imported from France. The “Methode Ancestrale” method of producing sparkling wines is not highly used in the production of sparkling wine, but the end result is a sweet, fruit forward sparkling wine that is fantastic. This wine undergoes a second fermentation process in the bottle while it is young, before the residual sugar level has been fermented into alcohol. The end result is a low alcohol (6% by volume), sweet sparkling wine that is reminiscent of a Moscato d’Asti. The aromas and flavors associated with the Toad Hollow Risqué are of ripe apples and pears. This is a light, crisp, easy to drink sparkling wine that is wonderful to sip on its own as an aperitif.