Blanc de Blancs, North Coast – 2006
The “Blanc de Blancs,” or “white from white,” made from Chardonnay is the counterpart to the “Blanc de Noirs,” or “white from black,” made from Pinot Noir. Blanc de Blancs was the first wine Schramsberg produced in 1965 and was America’s first commercially produced, Chardonnay-based brut sparkling wine. Schramsberg Blanc de Blancs gained international recognition in 1972 when then President Nixon served the wine at the historic Toast to Peace in Beijing, China.
The Schramsberg style of Blanc de Blancs is dry and crisp. Small lots of malolactic- and barrel-fermented wines are added for complexity. The wine is aged on the yeast lees in the bottle for two years prior to disgorgement. With its vibrant, fruitful and crisp nature, this sparkling wine will maintain its freshness, structure and refined finish for many years, even decades following its initial release.
While this wine can be enjoyed by itself as an apéritif, it is also perfect with fresh oysters and other shellfish, crab cakes, ceviche and grilled sea bass. It is also delicious with lemon chicken and Thai curries. Serve with aged Gouda or other hard cheeses and as a counterpoint to soft triple creams.
- Appellation: North Coast
- County Composition: 60% Napa, 22% Mendocino, 15% Sonoma, 3% Marin
- Harvest Date(s): August 28–October 17
- Barrel Fermentation: 23%
- Varietal Composition: 100% Chardonnay
- Production (in cases): 26,699 (9L equivalent) (22,000 12/750ml)
- Available Formats: 375ml, 750ml, 1.5L, 3L, 9L
- Alcohol: 12.9%
- TA: 0.85g/100ml
- p H: 3.07
- RS: 1.16g/100ml
The 2006 Blanc de Blancs delivers aromas of key lime, freshly cut green apple and honeydew melon, followed by just a hint of pineapple upside-down cake. Upon entry, the palate is layered with flavors of citrus, ripe Anjou pear, dried pineapple and baked apple pie. This Chardonnay sparkler finishes with lingering and balanced acidity.
Hugh Davies and Keith Hock, Winemakers
Blanc de Blancs, North Coast – 2006 – Best Sparkling – Food & Wine
“This all-Chardonnay bottling was the Davies family’s original sparkling wine back in 1965; Richard Nixon served it on his 1972 trip to China. For the 2006 vintage, the wine was aged in the bottle for two years on its lees (spent yeasts), giving complexity to its flavors of yellow apple, pear and melon.”
Blanc de Blancs, North Coast – 2006 – 91 points – winereviewonline.com
“Some years I like Schramsberg’s Blanc de Noirs better, but historically they’re best known for this wine. It’s a good vintage, with a crisp attack of Meyer lemon that spreads on the midpalate, bringing some toast and a hint of earth on the finish.”
Blanc de Blancs, North Coast – 2006 – 90 points – Wine Enthusiast
“Made from 100% Chardonnay grapes, this bubbly is dry, elegant and will take some bottle age. It has rich and complex, but subtle, flavors of grilled peaches, pears, brioche, vanilla and smoke, with a spicy finish.”
Blanc de Blancs, North Coast – 2006 – 91 points – Connoisseurs’ Guide to California Wine
“This attractive Blanc de Blancs manages at one and the same time to be loaded with character yet remains also on the energetic, well-fruited side. Its aromas are more creamy than “old yeasty” with notes of chalk and vanilla sitting in for the toasty notes that come with longer aged wines. Firm and abundant in its foamy, insistent mousse, this buoyant wine has the richness to go with foods like chicken in cream sauces and the acidity to make it a stellar mate to tangy shellfish dishes.”