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10 Summer Sparkling Wines To Pop Your Cork

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Whether you want to celebrate a special event - or just the fact that you're totally awesome - there are some exceptional sparkling wine bargains to be found around the city. We sent Eater Wine Correspondent, Kurtis Kolt on a mission to track out Vancouver's best non-Champagne bubbles.
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[Photo via Shutterstock]

Is there an Italian renaissance in the global sparkling wine world? In tracking down some of Vancouver's best wine directors and sommeliers for their favourite by-the-glass bubbles, a hearty 50 per cent of them headed in that direction. Is the country worthy of your sparkling attention, or is France the gatekeeper and British Columbia holding the home team advantage? There's only one way to find out. Here are ten of the best bubbles - in absolutely no particular order - to tackle in some of Vancouver's favourite spots.


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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. Ask for Luigi

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305 Alexander St, Vancouver
BC V6A 1C4, Canada
(604) 428-2544
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Montelvini Prosecco – Veneto, Italy - $6/glass. Matthew Morgenstern is the mild-mannered host of this cozy, Railtown hotspot with some of the city’s best pasta. “Our on-tap Prosecco is fruity with a delicate effervescence,” he says, “And perfect with Aperol on the rocks to create a refreshing and delicious spritz aperitif.” He adds that, “I also love working with their innovative, eco-friendly kegs that are 100% recyclable and lightweight.”

2. Pidgin

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350 Carrall St, Vancouver
BC V6B 2J3, Canada
(604) 620-9400
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JG Carrion Cristalino Reserva Cava – Catalonia, Spain - $8/glass. Neil Ingram used to own Boneta, one of Vancouver’s favourite restaurants. As he looks towards his next project, he’s spending a little time at Pidgin, pouring this, “Freakin’ delicious baby-Champagne; full of lemon-biscuity love and excessively quaffable.” His favourite part? “There’s a bonus. It says "not Cristal" on the label for the delusionally optimistic.”

3. YEW seafood + bar

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791 West Georgia St., Vancouver
BC V6C 2T4, Canada
(604) 692-4939
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Simonnet Febvre Crémant de Bourgogne Rosé – Burgundy, France - $18/glass. Allow us to break the bank for one of these, since if you’re feeling splashy, an awesome sparkling wine is probably in order. “Bubbles and Rosé are two of my favorite things,” says wine director Emily Walker, “And as this sparkling Burgundian Rosé looks and tastes just like quality Champagne from the best producers, it represents solid value in the bubbly market.” On the wine’s flavour profile, she swoons, “Fresh peaches, apricots and nectarines coupled with wild strawberry fruit and bread dough delight the palate. The texture is rounded with a creamy mousse, fresh acidity and deliciously vivacious bubbles.”

4. forage

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120-1300 Robson, Vancouver
BC V6E 1C5, Canada
(604) 661-1400
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Stoneboat Vineyards ‘Piano’ Brut – Oliver, BC - $11/glass. Restaurant manager and wine director Margot Baloro is all about championing the best of British Columbia. She shares that this local sparkler is, “a beautiful Okanagan brut that’s a perfect patio sipper for the summer. Vinified using the classic Charmat Method, this fresh Pinot Blanc-based bubbly has become a staff favourite.”

5. Boulevard Kitchen & Oyster Bar

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845 Burrard Street, Vancouver
BC, Canada
Jaume Serra Brut Nature – Penedés, Spain- $11/glass. Wine director Lisa Haley is run off of her feet these days, keeping the cellar humming through what is arguably the biggest restaurant opening of the year. The Montreal transplant says that while the traditional-method (Champagne-style) sparkling comes in at a great price, “this cava drinks better than cheap and cheerful. It's inexpensive but so complex with a little bit of Champagne-styled toastiness,” adding that it’s a “Great little oyster bubble.”

6. Cibo Trattoria

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900 Seymour St, Vancouver
BC V6B 3L9, Canada
(604) 602-9570
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Fantini ‘Cuvee Cococciola’ Brut – Abruzzo, Italy - $15/glass. Wine Director Robert Stelmachuk tries to perpetuate a wine adventure whenever possible and this is from the road less traveled for sure. “Cococciola (koh-koh-chee-oh-la) is a rare grape found in Abruzzo, he says, “The wine is bright with crisp acidity and explosive apple flesh, apricot stones, meadow flowers and soft-savory lemon verbena.”

7. Good Wolfe Kitchen & Bar

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1043 Mainland St., Vancouver
BC V6B 1A9, Canada
(604) 428-1043
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Törley Hungaria Grande Cuvée Brut – Budapest, Hungary - $10/glass (8oz). Whether he was making his own wine in Australia or raising his young family in Thailand, owner and veteran floor guy Richard Goodine has lived a lot of life. He discovered this crisp, lemony sparkler a few careers back when he was the marketing director of Whitehall Agencies and simply fell in love with it. So why pour it at Good Wolfe now? “We think it is one of the best valued sparkling wines on the market,” he says. At 10 bucks for an eight ounce pour, it sounds like he’s putting his money where his mouth is.

8. Charlie's Little Italian

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2610 Main St, Vancouver
BC, Canada
(604) 877-8582
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Pergolo Sparkling Prosecco – Veneto, Italy - $7.50/glass. Barman and co-owner Nick Devine uses this charmer as a bit of a Swiss army knife at this Main Street take on all things classic-Italian. “I use it in cocktails, so value’s important, but it also delivers as a dry, floral and lightly-spiced easy drinker,” he says, “But it’s great for mixing proper Bellinis and Aperol Spritzes as well.”

9. Burdock & Co.

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2702 Main St, Vancouver
BC V5T 3E8, Canada
(604) 879-0077
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Azienda Agricola Moro Rinaldini 2009 Rinaldo Brut - Emilia-Romagna, Italy - $12/glass. Layla Smith is the warm and cheery sommelier on the floor at Chef Andrea Carslon’s Main Street restaurant, and she enjoys this “...small family-run estate doing everything by hand. It’s all golden apple and pears on toast with bright streak of acidity. The best part is it’s a ridiculous value for ‘traditional method’ Italian bubble."

10. Bufala

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5395 West Blvd, Vancouver
BC, Canada
(604) 267-7499
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Lini 910 'Lambrusca' Lambrusco - Emilia Romagna, Italy - $9/glass. The newest project from Wildebeest owners James Iranzad and Josh Pape has not only elevated the food scene in Kerrisdale, but had many a local food fan navigate the wilds of the west side for the first time in years. Lambrusco? Really? James Iranzad explains: “It's fresh, it's juicy, it's balanced. It's delicious with pizza and as summery as it gets!”

1. Ask for Luigi

305 Alexander St, Vancouver, BC V6A 1C4, Canada
Montelvini Prosecco – Veneto, Italy - $6/glass. Matthew Morgenstern is the mild-mannered host of this cozy, Railtown hotspot with some of the city’s best pasta. “Our on-tap Prosecco is fruity with a delicate effervescence,” he says, “And perfect with Aperol on the rocks to create a refreshing and delicious spritz aperitif.” He adds that, “I also love working with their innovative, eco-friendly kegs that are 100% recyclable and lightweight.”
305 Alexander St, Vancouver
BC V6A 1C4, Canada

2. Pidgin

350 Carrall St, Vancouver, BC V6B 2J3, Canada
JG Carrion Cristalino Reserva Cava – Catalonia, Spain - $8/glass. Neil Ingram used to own Boneta, one of Vancouver’s favourite restaurants. As he looks towards his next project, he’s spending a little time at Pidgin, pouring this, “Freakin’ delicious baby-Champagne; full of lemon-biscuity love and excessively quaffable.” His favourite part? “There’s a bonus. It says "not Cristal" on the label for the delusionally optimistic.”
350 Carrall St, Vancouver
BC V6B 2J3, Canada

3. YEW seafood + bar

791 West Georgia St., Vancouver, BC V6C 2T4, Canada
Simonnet Febvre Crémant de Bourgogne Rosé – Burgundy, France - $18/glass. Allow us to break the bank for one of these, since if you’re feeling splashy, an awesome sparkling wine is probably in order. “Bubbles and Rosé are two of my favorite things,” says wine director Emily Walker, “And as this sparkling Burgundian Rosé looks and tastes just like quality Champagne from the best producers, it represents solid value in the bubbly market.” On the wine’s flavour profile, she swoons, “Fresh peaches, apricots and nectarines coupled with wild strawberry fruit and bread dough delight the palate. The texture is rounded with a creamy mousse, fresh acidity and deliciously vivacious bubbles.”
791 West Georgia St., Vancouver
BC V6C 2T4, Canada

4. forage

120-1300 Robson, Vancouver, BC V6E 1C5, Canada
Stoneboat Vineyards ‘Piano’ Brut – Oliver, BC - $11/glass. Restaurant manager and wine director Margot Baloro is all about championing the best of British Columbia. She shares that this local sparkler is, “a beautiful Okanagan brut that’s a perfect patio sipper for the summer. Vinified using the classic Charmat Method, this fresh Pinot Blanc-based bubbly has become a staff favourite.”
120-1300 Robson, Vancouver
BC V6E 1C5, Canada

5. Boulevard Kitchen & Oyster Bar

845 Burrard Street, Vancouver, BC, Canada
Jaume Serra Brut Nature – Penedés, Spain- $11/glass. Wine director Lisa Haley is run off of her feet these days, keeping the cellar humming through what is arguably the biggest restaurant opening of the year. The Montreal transplant says that while the traditional-method (Champagne-style) sparkling comes in at a great price, “this cava drinks better than cheap and cheerful. It's inexpensive but so complex with a little bit of Champagne-styled toastiness,” adding that it’s a “Great little oyster bubble.”
845 Burrard Street, Vancouver
BC, Canada

6. Cibo Trattoria

900 Seymour St, Vancouver, BC V6B 3L9, Canada
Fantini ‘Cuvee Cococciola’ Brut – Abruzzo, Italy - $15/glass. Wine Director Robert Stelmachuk tries to perpetuate a wine adventure whenever possible and this is from the road less traveled for sure. “Cococciola (koh-koh-chee-oh-la) is a rare grape found in Abruzzo, he says, “The wine is bright with crisp acidity and explosive apple flesh, apricot stones, meadow flowers and soft-savory lemon verbena.”
900 Seymour St, Vancouver
BC V6B 3L9, Canada

7. Good Wolfe Kitchen & Bar

1043 Mainland St., Vancouver, BC V6B 1A9, Canada
Törley Hungaria Grande Cuvée Brut – Budapest, Hungary - $10/glass (8oz). Whether he was making his own wine in Australia or raising his young family in Thailand, owner and veteran floor guy Richard Goodine has lived a lot of life. He discovered this crisp, lemony sparkler a few careers back when he was the marketing director of Whitehall Agencies and simply fell in love with it. So why pour it at Good Wolfe now? “We think it is one of the best valued sparkling wines on the market,” he says. At 10 bucks for an eight ounce pour, it sounds like he’s putting his money where his mouth is.
1043 Mainland St., Vancouver
BC V6B 1A9, Canada

8. Charlie's Little Italian

2610 Main St, Vancouver, BC, Canada
Pergolo Sparkling Prosecco – Veneto, Italy - $7.50/glass. Barman and co-owner Nick Devine uses this charmer as a bit of a Swiss army knife at this Main Street take on all things classic-Italian. “I use it in cocktails, so value’s important, but it also delivers as a dry, floral and lightly-spiced easy drinker,” he says, “But it’s great for mixing proper Bellinis and Aperol Spritzes as well.”
2610 Main St, Vancouver
BC, Canada

9. Burdock & Co.

2702 Main St, Vancouver, BC V5T 3E8, Canada
Azienda Agricola Moro Rinaldini 2009 Rinaldo Brut - Emilia-Romagna, Italy - $12/glass. Layla Smith is the warm and cheery sommelier on the floor at Chef Andrea Carslon’s Main Street restaurant, and she enjoys this “...small family-run estate doing everything by hand. It’s all golden apple and pears on toast with bright streak of acidity. The best part is it’s a ridiculous value for ‘traditional method’ Italian bubble."
2702 Main St, Vancouver
BC V5T 3E8, Canada

10. Bufala

5395 West Blvd, Vancouver, BC, Canada
Lini 910 'Lambrusca' Lambrusco - Emilia Romagna, Italy - $9/glass. The newest project from Wildebeest owners James Iranzad and Josh Pape has not only elevated the food scene in Kerrisdale, but had many a local food fan navigate the wilds of the west side for the first time in years. Lambrusco? Really? James Iranzad explains: “It's fresh, it's juicy, it's balanced. It's delicious with pizza and as summery as it gets!”
5395 West Blvd, Vancouver
BC, Canada