Last night the new store in Sebring opened with a bang at the grand opening tasting. It’s a gorgeous new store with all of the appointments and amenities. Suppliers from all of the big distributors contributed their time and efforts, as did local restaurants.
I served the Haton Brut and Rosé Champagnes and the Costarosa Sangue di Giuda. The Haton Champagnes are wines that I bring in through a small local distributor and are the best values we have in Champagne. The Brut sells for $29.99 and the Rosé for $32.99. The Hatons are a small, family company located in Damery on the banks of the Marne River in the heart of Champagne country. They have recently built a new facility on the edge of town that is ultramodern and the cleanest winery I have seen, an important factor in Champagne production. Both wines were well received.
The Sangue di Giuda (Sahng-way de Joo-da) or Blood of Judas is a wine made in the Lombardy region of Italy from a blend of Bonarda, Barbera, Nebbiolo and others and has a slight fizz or frizzante character with some sweetness. It’s about as dark, opaque purple as any wine you’ll see, with lively bubbles. It fills a niche for those who want a red wine but not a dry one. We sold every bottle in the store and people were asking for more. The name is Costarosa and it sells for $12.99.
–Brad Lewis, Fine Wines Buyer