My quest is to try at least one sparkling wine for every day of the year. That is 365 sparklers in total. I won’t stop if I’m able to surpass the mark, nor will I fail if I come up short. The only failure in life is failing to try.
Champagne / sparkling wine was my first passion and continues to be my favorite category. For 2011, I’m considering doing dessert wines, since they are my second favorite, but first we’ll see how this challenge goes.
What do I need from you, my faithful reader or person who is reading this for the first time?
I need samples. If you work for an importer, distributor or anyone who sells sparkling wine and want it reviewed as part of the quest, please contact me for shipping information. If you know someone who knows someone, please tell them about this site and my quest.
If you are a blogger or Twitterer, please blog or Tweet about this. I have a Fan Page on Facebook as well. There is no such thing as too many blasts of information. Perhaps someone will notice this and hook me up. Believe you me, I’ll be sending this out to as many sources as possible and your support will help my cause. If you are in Atlanta, we’ll do a big ol’ Tweetup in December 2010 and I’ll share my best samples. For everyone else, I offer many thanks in advance.
Primarily, I’m doing this to have a purpose and dedicated quest. I’ve read Crush It!: Why NOW Is the Time to Cash In on Your Passion by Gary Vaynerchuk a total of three times. His book and passion made me think, what am I most passionate about? Well, wine for one, but sparkling wine is easily my particular obsession. So, while I’ll continue to drink and review other wines, along with food & restaurants here in Atlanta, I’ll be adding this as additional education and entertainment. Perhaps me and Ed McCarthy can hook up and do an updated version of his book Champagne for Dummies. That would be so awesome!
Second, I love sparkling wine, as in I love it more than most people or even my fellow oenophiles. Ask any of my wine drinking friends / acquaintances, they’ll tell you how much I love the bubbles. I mean come on, how many people do you know that will go back to the wine shop to buy that sparkling Riesling from Idaho they spotted on the shelf? That’s me. I even named my cat after one of the most famous Champagne houses! I also once threw a sparkling wine party for a bunch of friends and the party wasn’t cheap, let me tell you! It was worth it though, without a doubt, it was worth it.
Third, I must give credit to Julie Powell, most of whom you know as the Julie of Julie and Julia: My Year of Cooking Dangerously. While I’ve not read the book, I did see the movie. It was a great tale of someone who took it upon themselves to transform their life. In Julie’s case, it was with food and she drew inspiration from the beloved Julia Child, who inspired millions to cook. For me, I’m going with sparkling wine (Champagne, domestic, Cava, Prosecco, Franciacorta, Asti, Sekt, Cap Classique and all the others that I don’t have room to list). It is my most passionate love in the wine world and something that gets me excited.
Fourth, I want to promote sparkling wine and give it more attention. Granted, everyone is used to having Champagne / sparkling wine on New Year’s Eve or for “special occasions”, but they are missing out. I mean, just opening a bottle of bubbly is celebratory in of itself. I want to get as many people excited about sparkling wine as possible…I want to be the Ambassador of Bubbles!
Well, that does it for now. I’ll keep this page updated with thanks and a list of any samples I receive / have been promised.
Thank you so much for your help and support. If you do something, please make sure to let me know and put something about it in the comments down below.
Peace and bubbles,
Kevin aka Atlanta Wine Guy
- Thanks to @suburbanwino for the RT
- Got my first positive response from Frederick Wildman & Sons! Woo Hoo!
- Thanks to Hardy for his encouraging Tweet
- Thanks to Schramsberg for saying yes! A thrill to have America’s first sparkling wine producer on board.
- Thanks to Pernod-Ricard USA and Folsom & Associates (they do PR for Mumm USA) for helping me out with samples of Perrier-Jouet, GH Mumm and Mumm Napa.
- Thanks to J Vineyards and their PR firm Jarvis Communications for agreeing to provide a sample!
- Samples from Mumm Napa arrived…5 down, 360(+) to go.
- Samples from Frederick Wildman & Sons arrived, including a bottle of Champagne Pol Roger…4 more down, 356(+) to go.
- Thanks to Prestige Wine Imports pledge to provide samples. Humbled by all the support I’m receiving.
- Sample from J Winery arrived. 1 more down, 355(+) to go.
- Thanks to Bagrationi for committing to provide samples.
- Received a message from UPS that a package weighing 15lbs from Dr. Frank Winery is on its way!
- Got email from Banfi that they are sending 4 bottles. Awesome! Thank you so much!
- Got email from Henriot they’d like to help. Woo Hoo!
- Another email, this time from Rémy Cointreau USA. They want to send samples. Booya!
- Received 4 bottles courtesy of Dr. Frank Winery. How awesome is that! 4 more down, 351(+) to go!
- Got an email from Pasternak that they were sending samples. Whew, things were getting too quiet ’round here. Thank you for your support!
- Got an email from Graham Beck Wines in South Africa that they thought it was a cool idea and they want to provide some samples. Another continent, another country, just what I want to make this a truly international affair!
- Got commitment for a couple things from Kysela!
- Just got word that Domaine Carneros is sending in a couple bottles!
- 2 more bottles in, this time from Bagrationi, made in Georgia, the country! Thanks to them for their support. That puts me at 19 in, 346(+) to go. Gotta keep hustlin’!
- Got 2 bottles (bonus!) from Zonin.
- Also received 4 bottles from Banfi, so another 5 down, 341(+) to go. Keep adding layers to the snowball.
- And the hits keep on coming, as I got another commitment from Broadbent Selections, so I say another thank you to them.
- Here comes the BOOM! I’m not sure how many (5 I think), but just got an awesome commitment from Henriot Inc., the importers of Champagne Henriot.
- 5 bottles from Champagne Henriot Inc arrived today! Almost like the Road Runner himself was on the job. They included 2 vintage bottles, one from 1995, the other from 1998. It was like Christmas!
- 2 bottles from Palm Bay Imports arrived as well, including a bottle of Champagne Gosset.
- So, that makes 7 in today ,334(+) to go.
- No personal news, but I just read about the first ever Independent Champagne & Sparkling Wine Invitational and while I can’t attend, its still an awesome event.
- 3 bottles from Kysela just arrived. So, that makes 331(+) to go. Cool, I’ve got a month covered!
- Received word from VA winery Horton Vineyards they would love to participate. Cool thing, beyond the fact it is another state, is the bubbly is made from Viognier!
- 6 bottles from Pasternak arrived.
- 1 bottle of Nicolas Feuillatte Blue Label Champagne arrived courtesy of Millissime PR & Marketing Services. That makes a total of 7 more down, 324(+) to go!
- I just got a commitment for 2 more bottles, this time from the nice folks at TGIC Importers.
- I also got word from a local distributor that they’d been contacted by their negociant and I’d be receiving a bottle of something from them. Not a bad way to start off a Monday.
- More promised bottles, this time from Avanti Wines. Cool.
- Another promise and this time, from right here in the USA, Biltmore! They make six different ones, but I’m not sure how many they are sending. No matter, 1 to 6, it’s all good and very much appreciated.
- Another promised wine, this one from Pacific Rim.
- Whew! I thought today was going to be silent, but I just got an email from Kluge that they were willing to support the mission with some samples. I love good news, especially on rainy days like this.
- Got a MONSTER offer of support from Kobrand. Biggest one yet, as they have 13 different sparkling wines in the portfolio, including Champagne Taittinger.
- Another offer of 2 bottles of Champagne, this time from Ayala.
- 6 bottles of Champagne just arrived from the lovely peeps at Pernod Ricard USA, including 3 from GH Mumm and 3 from Perrier-Jouët. Wow.
- 3 bottles arrived from the nice folks at Remy-Cointreau USA, including 2 from Piper-Sonomaand 1 bottle of Piper-Heidsieck Brut Champagne! More bubbles, more bubbles.
- 2 more samples just arrived from Domaine Carneros, woo hoo!
- Also showing up were 4 bottles courtesy of my first winery from South Africa, Graham Beck. Awesome!
- Finally, joining those 6, were another 3 from America’s first house of sparkling wine,Schramsberg, which saw fit to include their 2001 Reserve!
- That puts me at 58 bottles total, leaving another 307(+) to go. Whew, that is still a really big number. Thanks to everyone who has provided samples and support, along with others who have provided me leads and new contacts. Those are very valuable as well. This is gonna be fun!
- A bottle from Kluge just arrived, so now I’m down to 306 to go. Man oh man. Happy Friday the 13th!
- The two bottles of Champagne Ayala just arrived, which not only gets me 2 bottles closer, but also gives me my first zero dosage. Awesome!
- Two bottles from different sparkling wine producers on Long Island just arrived (along with some Montes goodies) courtesy of Cornerstone Communications. Thank you so much!
- Two bottles of Pascual Toso bubbly (Brut & Extra Brut) also arrived, courtesy of TGIC Importers. Thanks!
- Been a slow week, but I did get a commitment from Champagne Mandois, including the possibility of getting their award winning Blanc de Blancs. I hope that happens because I love that style of Champagne / bubbly. Thank you!
- Another promise of a German Sekt from Rudi Wiest. Yes!
- Just got 3 more bottles in from Champagne Mandois. Awesome!
- The package from Kobrand arrived, with a grand total of 10 bottles in it, including 5 different bottlings from Champagne Taittinger, including some stuff I’d never even heard of!
- 4 bottles from Biltmore arrived. Yippee!
- That puts me at 82 bottles in, leaving another 283 more to go. I still have a LOT of work to do.
- Received 7 more samples, this time courtesy of Prestige Wine Imports.
- I have a verbal promise of 3 bottles from Gregory White PR, who heard about my project from the Testa Wines of the World, the importer of Luigi Bosca. Man, the world sure is getting smaller.
- Things with the sparkling wine are slow, as I anticipated would happen after Thanksgiving. The sparkling wine producers generate tremendous sales and with the slow economy, they are out there working it. I’ve also not been soliciting, knowing January will be a much better time to reach folks. I did want to recognize that the 3 different bottles from Gregory White PRhave all finally arrived. Thanks to them!
- I also received 2 bottles from the nice folks at Cristalino, one of their brut and one of the rosé. Thank you!
- That puts me at 94 bottles in hand right now, so at least I have enough to get me through the first quarter. I’m so thankful to all the support, just got keep plugging away. If you know of anyone in the industry, please let them know about me or have them contact me. I think I’ll make a video after the first of the year. I’m looking forward to January!
- Just got 8 new sparkling wine samples courtesy of the wonderful folks at Freixenet USA. Thank you!
- Wow, I didn’t realize it had been that long since I updated. Well, things have gotten quiet, but I’ve not been hustlin’ it as much as I was, but that will change. I have gotten a couple of sample promises:
- Sovereign Brands has been so kind as to give me a sample of Armand de Brignac!!! Wow, the #1 rated Champagne in the world and not exactly something we find in the budget aisle. Totally stoked for this.
- L. Mawby has agreed to provide me some samples too! I love finding these types of wines and will be combing the net for more sparkling wines from Michigan. I love the M. Lawrence labels, so check them out.
- Rita Jammet of La Caravelle Champagnes offered to send samples, which is totally awesome!
- V. Sattui agreed to get me some of their wines, which I’m looking forward to. Thank you so much!
- Samples from L. Mawby just arrived! I love it when someone makes a promise and delivers. I even got two of the ones I was hoping for, just because the names are so much fun. I doubt they’d fly down here in the South, at least in Alabama.
- 3 lovely bottles of La Caravelle Champagne arrived…woo hoo!
- I was contacted by the local distributor of Champagne Louis Barthélémy to offer me two bottles…yum!
- I just received an email that not only will I get two bottles of bubbly from Toad Hollow, but that I was their lunch conversation today. I feel almost-semi-famous. =)
- Two bottles from Toad Hollow arrived.
- One bottle from Winebow arrived, which I wasn’t expecting. It is a bottle of Szigeti sparkling Gruner Veltliner, so that should prove to be interesting.
- Got 3 more samples, including a sparkling shiraz (the first of what I hope will be a few) and 2 Proseccos courtesy of Avanti.
- Picked up 2 bottles courtesy of Taltarni. Cheers to them.
- 3 bottles arrived from Sparkling Pointe! Thank you.
- 3 bottles of assorted sparklers from Austria arrived. All of these wines are Darcy Huberselections and I’m very excited to have the opportunity to try them, as I’ve never had any bubbly from Austria.
- 3 bottles from Laetita arrived. Thank you.
- Received commitments from two different sources. First, the promise of a bottle from Jon-David Headrick Selections. I think they would have given me more, but they are between vintages on a lot of their wines. Maybe more later? Big thanks to them!
- Second source is the fine folks at Maison Marques & Domaines. They are getting me six bottles.
- Got 7 bottles from Maison Marques & Domaines which is totally awesome!
- The bottle from Jon-David Headrick arrived last week. Thanks to them!