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    With their new Made in India sparkling wines, French Champagne group Moet Hennessy hopes to ‘democratise bubbles’

    While thousands of people will be popping bottles of Champagne across the country over the next few weeks, there is a more affordable yet luxe alternative. From the Moet Hennessy stable comes Chandon, premium sparkling wine that is made in India. Now we know that Champagne can only refer to a sparkling wine made in the Champagne region of France, following a specific method and with the grapes grown in the region (traditionally, Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier). Anything with the same method but outside the region is referred to as sparkling.

    So what we have from Moët & Chandon, the world’s leading Champagne House since 1743, are two sparkling variants, Chandon Brut and Chandon Brut Rosé. Launched in Mumbai recently, they are the result of an idea that took shape back in 2009. ‘‘There is a vast population of young Indians, 25-35 year-old men and women, who aspire to consume luxury as they get older. With Chandon Brut and Chandon Brut Rosé, we aim to democratise bubbles,’’ says Gaurav Bhatia — Marketing Director, Moët Hennessy India. At Nashik, the home of Chandon in India, Moet Hennessy experts worked with resident winemaker Kelly Healey to create these wines.

    The Chandon Brut, where Chenin Blanc is the primary grape used, is described as having a fresh fruit bouquet of citrus and green apple, with a creamy textured middle palate and a lingering, crisp dry ‘Brut’ finish. The Chandon Brut Rosé, likely to be a big hit among us Indians, made from Shiraz and Pinot Noir, is a vibrant rose gold with a flavour that is compared to mouth-filling small red fruits. They are both worthy of the Chandon name and will make for more frequent bubbly outings.

    Pairing manual
    While how you like to drink your bubbly is your business, Bhatia shares a few popular pairings from the house: Seafood like oysters, shrimp, crab, lobster, scallops and mussels, grilled foods, and Indian cuisine (seafood and meat cooked in the tandoor, lightly spiced kebabs and mildly spiced curries) are great with bubbly. Complex vegetables like cauliflower and eggplant work beautifully as well.

    Chandon retails at Rs 1,200 for Chandon Brut and Rs 1,400 for Chandon Brut Rosé, currently at select wine retailers, hotels and bars in Mumbai.

    — Team Indulge

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