A Bevy of Bubbly Options Makes Drink Programs Sparkle
By Kelly A. Magyarics
The notion of sipping Champagne solely to mark a milestone or celebrate a special occa- sion is as yesterday as a flat glass of leftover
Brut. Operators and guests these days recognize
that a world of sparkling wine exists in addition to
Champagne, and bar mavens are building exciting
drink menus around that concept. Through staff and
guest education, impressive selections of bubbly
from around the world, innovative tasting events and
synergetic food pairings, venues are introducing this
wine category to a whole new audience. We check
in with four sparkling wine-centric bars that are effervescence experts.
Flûte Champagne Bar
New York City (Gramercy and Midtown)
An impressive 75 percent of alcohol sales at Flûte
stem from sparkling wine and sparkling wine-based
cocktails. Twenty-five wines are available by taste or
glass, and more than 120 by the bottle. Biodynamic
wines, small boutique and grower Champagnes and
budget-friendly bottles like Prosecco and Cava join
conventional producers. Bubbly cocktails change
seasonally, but two perennial favorites remain: the
Champagne Mojito with Bacardi Light and Piper-Heidsieck Champagne, and the tart and tangy Antoinette with Absolut Ruby Red and Piper-Hiedsieck.
Five flights with the moniker “Magic Flûtes” allow
patrons to sip bubbly in a variety of styles ($20 to
$27), as well as sample a selection of Bellinis ($18) or
Kir Royales ($15), the latter available in flavors ranging from traditional cassis to more eclectic ginger,
pomegranate, violet and blackberry.
Staff training is intensive: a weeklong program at
30 Nightclub & Bar Magazine | OC TOBER 2009
At the Champagne bar inside Pick wick & Frolic, Sommelier Dina Kostis offers an extensive menu.