Like Trapiche, whose Fond de Cave Malbec I recently reviewed, Norton is one of the larger bodegas in Argentina. The amount of wines that the produce is at times astounding: so many lines, so many varietals, so many names and labels… it makes my head spin.
Today I am highlighting one of my favorite Norton wines, the Extra Brut sparkling. Made from Chardonnay and Chenin grapes from the Lujan de Cuyo region of Mendoza, this wine is very fruit-forward (with a lot of citrus fruits) and has a very strong yeast presence. The bubbles are large and lively (thanks to the method of production: the charmat process, which is detailed in my article of Champagne and Sparkling Wines). I found the wine to be quite fun and awake and think it is perfect for Sunday brunch: the bubbles and citrus would cut a hollandaise sauce perfectly! No, it is not the methode champenoise that you pay a few dollars more for… but it is a perfect easy-drinking wine, and a great buy.
One of the advantages of profiling larger houses like Norton is that I am confident these wines are available in the United States. Norton is a huge name in the U.S. Argentine Malbec import world, but few realize that the bodega produces sparkling wines that are a great value.