The Hedonistic Taster: Exotic and Sparkling Holiday Wines

Lucien Albrecht NV Brut Crémant is a blend of 50% Pinot Blanc, 50% Auxerrois

The Hedonistic Taster

Exotic + Sparkling Wines

LM Archer Tastevin

by L.M. Archer, FWS | Bourgogne + Champagne Master Level

The Hedonistic Taster provides an intimate format to share industry trade sample tasting notes with you.

Please enjoy this Exotic + Sparkling Wines Holiday edition, showcasing bubbles from Champagne and Alsace, Pinot Noir from New Zealand, and red wines of Chile.

Disclaimer: No compensation is received; all opinions expressed are that of the author.

Piper-Hiedsieck Champagne Rosé Sauvage is a blend of 50-60% Pinot Noir, 20-25% Pinot Meunier, and 10-15% Chardonnay.


Wine:  Piper-Heidsieck Champagne Rosé Sauvage

Vintage: N/V

Alcohol:  12%

Link to Producer Specs here.

Suggested Retail: $ 60

Robe:  Distinctive, deep scarlet robe. Tiny, effusive bubbles rise to a luxurious mousse. 

Nose:  Burnished biscuit and lush strawberry aromas. 

Bouche: A gloriously dry, well-orchestrated riot of pink grapefruit and blood orange play upon the palate. A champagne both endlessly entertaining, and deeply satisfying.

Piper-Heidsieck Champagne Cuvée Brut is a blend of several vineyards and vintages produced in Reims, FR.


Wine: Piper-Heidsieck Champagne Cuvée Brut

Vintage: N/V

Alcohol:  12%

Link to Producer Specs here.

Suggested Retail: $ 45

Robe: Deep, amber-gold robe. Profuse, pinpoint perling eddies into a profuse mousse.

Nose: An exotic ambrosia of brioche, butterscotch and floral aromas. 

Bouche:  A well-balanced, textural tap dance of pear, grapefruit and citrus upon the palate. 

More about Piper-Heidsieck Champagne here.

Lucien Albrecht Crémant d'Alsace Brut Sparkling Wine is produced in the Méthode Traditionnelle.


Wine:  Lucien Albrecht Crémant d’Alsace

Vintage: N/V

Alcohol:  12.5%

Link to Producer Specs here.

Suggested Retail: $23

Robe:  Vivid golden hue.

Nose: A bright bouquet of white floral notes, pinhead beading, and generous mousse.

Bouche: A cuvée of 50% Pinot Blanc, 50% Auxerrois that offers a well-rounded, fresh mouthfeel, with notes of golden apple and yellow stone fruit.

This crémant checks all the right boxes: quality, affordability, and charm – suitable for any celebration. 

More about Lucien Albrecht d’Alsace here. 

Château de Sales 2015 Pomerol, Héritiers de Lambert - Bordeaux, FR.


Wine:  Château de Sales Pomerol – Bordeaux, FR.

Vintage: 2015 &  2016

Alcohol:  14%

Link to 2015 Pomerol Producer Specs here.

Link to 2016 Pomerol Producer Specs here.

Suggested Retail: $31/each bottle.

Robe: Deep garnet robe. 


2015: Plush red fruit gives way to lush plum and muted, earthy aromas.

2016: More pronounced red fruits, black tea and green pepper back note.


2015: Supple tannins, velvety red fruit and lush black plum on entry through to mid-palate, with a wisp of spice box through to the refined finish.

2016: Raspberry coulis gives way to  blackberry, with a hint of black pepper and capsicum on the finish.

More about Château de Sales here.

Odfjell Armador Cabernett Sauvignon is made from organic grapes grown in Valle del Maipo, Chile.


Wine:  Odfjell Armador Cabernet Sauvignon Organic Wine  – Valle del Maipo, Chile

Vintage: 2016

Alcohol: 13.5%

Link to Producer Specs here.

Suggested Retail: $ 15

Robe: Deep ruby-violet robe.

Nose: A cornucopia of red fruit, spice and mushroom aromas.

Bouche:  “Armador’ means shipbuilder. Owner Dan Odfjell, a Norwegian shipowner turned South American organic winemaker, captures the essence of adventure in this surprisingly light-medium bodied,  high quality, entry-level 100% Cabernet Sauvignon from Maipo Valley in Chile.

Tasty red fruit lead through to spice and licorice mid-palate, with a hint of cocoa on the lingering finish.

Odfjell Orzada organic Carignan is sourced from Valle del Maule, Chile.


Wine:  Odfjell Orzada Carignan Organic Wine –  Valle del Maule, Chile

Vintage: 2017

Alcohol:  15%

Link to Producer Specs here.

Suggested Retail: $ 23

Robe: Deep purple hue rimmed in ruby.

Nose: A mélange of juniper, clove, and loam.

Bouche:  Light-to-medium body, bright acids on the attack that soften to silky tannins on the finish.

Savory hints of tamarind, persimmon and plum leave a patina of umami on the finish.

“Orzada” means ‘to sail into the wind.”  For anyone with doubts about trying a Carignan dominant  – worth sailing into the wind for this one.

Odfjell Alaria organic red blend is comprised of 65% Carignan, 20% Syrah, and 15% Malbec grown in Valle Central, Chile.


Wine:  Odfjell Aliara Organic Wine –  Valle Central, Chile  

Vintage: 2013

Alcohol:  14,5%

Link to Producer Specs here. 

Suggested Retail: $ 44

Robe: Intense garnet robe.

Nose: A heady array of tobacco, sous bois, and rich red fruit.

Bouche:  This 65% Carignan, 20% Syrah, and 15% Malbec light-bodied, artfully balanced red blend shape-shifts between blue and red fruits, with a fillip of fennel and pinch of tobacco to add interest and depth.

A ‘liara’ was a tin cup measurement used in sailing to denote a crew’s daily ration of wine. This assemblage will leave you wishing to exceed your own daily wine ration.

More about Odjfell Vineyards here.

Wairau River 2016 Pinot Noir is estate grown in Marlborough, NZ.


Wine:  Wairau River Pinot Noir – Marlborough, NZ.

Vintage: 2016

Alcohol:  13.5%

Link to Producer Specs here.

Suggested Retail: $ 24.99

Robe:  Pellucid ruby robe.

Nose: Dusty rocks, and steely blue and black fruit aromas. 

Bouche:  Light-bodied, well-structured array of red currant, cranberry, and bramble berry, with a gunmetal finish. A quality value wine.

More about Wairau River Wines here.

Have a favorite exotic or sparkling wine?  Feel free to leave your comments below. 


More The Hedonistic Taster here.

Copyright © 2018 L.M. Archer. All Rights Reserved.

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