The Wine Curmudgeon reported a couple of weeks ago that a study found that French wine gets a disproportionate amount of Internet buzz given its declining share of the world market. There are any number of reasons for this, including the Winestream Media's obsession with red Bordeaux and the sense among many consumers that French wine remains La Grande Dame despite its many problems.
This month, I'm going to add to the Internet buzz, but not for either of those two reasons. The White Foil ($47, sample) can stand on its own as an example of what Champagne is and what French wine can be when the French aren't preoccupied with selling wine to the Chinese, rioting vineyard owners, and sneaking one past all those stupid Americans.
Those of us who write about wine use terms like classic a lot (probably too much, in fact), but that's what the White Foil is. If you want to taste real Champagne -- sparkling wine grown in the Champagne region of France -- then try this. As Champagne goes, it's not ridiculously expensive, and has all of the qualities Champagne is supposed to have.
Look for lots of green apple fruit in the front and streams and streams of bubbles in the glass. The wine is crisp and fresh and fine, and has a bit of the toast quality of classic Champagne -- though it's quite subtle and not as overdone as other, more popular wines, who offer that baseball bat up the side of the head effect. And leaving the wine open for a few minutes before you drink it won't hurt.
This is a wine for gifts and special occasions, and to share with someone who appreciates quality and a quiet moment.